China UK Energy 920
Chinese and British energy experts and researchers gather at the University of Birmingham for the 2019 UK-China Future Energy System Development Forum.

University of Birmingham scientists joined their Chinese counterparts at the 2019 UK-China Future Energy System Development Forum to explore new and innovative ways of accelerating the adoption of renewable energy.

Over 100 energy experts and researchers gathered at the University to discuss the major challenges facing future energy systems using sustainable energy sources, as well as creating new partnerships between UK and Chinese industrial and academic communities.

Working with the Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering (CSEE), UK-China University Consortium on Engineering Education and Research (UCEER) and the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), CSEE UK Chapter, CSEE Europe Chapter and CSEE North America Chapter, University of Birmingham researchers organised the 2019 UK-China Future Energy System Development Forum.

Professor Xiao-Ping Zhang, Director of Smart Grid, Birmingham Energy Institute at the University of Birmingham, commented: “Decarbonising the power sector by ramping up the adoption of renewable energy is essential to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. We can only accelerate the global shift to low carbon through a combination of renewable energy, modernised power grid connections, intelligent demand management and market reforms.

“Our forum at the University of Birmingham provides a timely and comprehensive review of progress, applications, and challenges spurred by large scale renewable energy generation. It is a great opportunity to create exciting partnerships between researchers and technology manufacturers in this vital field.”

The event was attended by key figures in the Chinese renewable energy sector including: Baosen Zheng, President of CSEE; Sunan Jiang, Science and Technology Minister Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy London; Dr Xiaoliang Chen, Deputy Secretary General of CSEE, Haibo Chen, Vice President of Global Energy Interconnection Research Institute, State Grid Corporation of China and President of GEIRIEU (Global Energy Interconnection Research Institute Europe), State Grid Corporation of China, and Zhiwei Wang, Vice President of Global Energy Interconnection Research Institute (in Beijing), State Grid Corporation of China and President of GEIRINA (Global Energy Interconnection Research Institute North America), State Grid Corporation of China.

Guests were welcomed by University of Birmingham Provost Professor Tim Jones, who commented: “It is tremendously exciting to welcome such renowned experts to the University of Birmingham and testament to the strength of our growing reputation in China as our researchers establish innovative collaborations around the globe.”

President of CSEE, Mr Baosen Zheng commented: “The Challenges and Solutions of Power Grids with High Penetration of Renewable Energy, this forum fits well with the current situations facing the development of renewable energy.

“China boasts the fastest development of wind and photovoltaic power generation in the world. Especially in recent years, the renewable energies, mainly consisting of wind power and photovoltaic power, have been soaring, with the installed capacities of wind power and photovoltaic power generation reaching 184 GW and 174 GW respectively in 2018.

“By 2030, China's renewable energy power generation will represent more than 30% of the total, which will pose challenges to the planning and operation of power system. Some European and American countries have plenty of proven experiences in planning, joint dispatching, power market operation, inter-regional trade and so forth of renewable energy.

“It is heartening to join you in this forum to exchange experiences and insights on renewable energy development, to analyze the problems faced by high penetration renewable energy in power systems and identify solutions, and advance the development of renewable energy technologies.”

UK sector leaders attending included Professor Sir Michael Sterling, FREng, former Chair of STFC; Professor Yulong Ding, Director of Birmingham Centre for Energy Storage; Ms. Nicola Hewitt, Commercial Director, West Midlands Growth Company; Prof. Goran Strbac, Imperial College London; John Scott, from the IET Energy Policy Panel; Professor James Yu, Innovation Manager, Scottish Power Energy Networks and Dr Xiaoyao Zhou, Technical Policy Manager, National Grid.

The Forum follows Professor Zhang’s recent keynote speech at the 2019 UNESCO International Water Conference, in Paris, where he set out University of Birmingham proposals to use smart energy control technology to combine wind and wave power – potentially providing all the world’s electricity needs.

For more information, please contact Tony Moran, International Communications Manager, University of Birmingham on +44 (0) 121 414 8254 or +44 (0)782 783 2312. For out-of-hours enquiries, please call +44 (0) 7789 921 165.

  • The University of Birmingham is ranked amongst the world’s top 100 institutions, its work brings people from across the world to Birmingham, including researchers and teachers and more than 6,500 international students from over 150 countries.
  • The history of collaboration between China and the University of Birmingham dates back almost to the foundation of the University in 1901. The China Institute was created to reflect the University’s extensive academic activities its colleagues undertake in China.
  • CSEE is a non-profit, nongovernmental academic and professional organization of scientists and engineers in the electrical engineering field. The predecessor of CSEE is Chinese Society for Electrical Engineers, founded in Shanghai in 1934. CSEE has more than 120 thousand individual members and 1000 collective members. The membership composition includes power enterprises, power administrative and supervisory bodies, research institutes and universities, design and construction companies as well as machinery manufacturers
  • The IET has kept records of its own activities as well as the development of electrical engineering and technological innovation with records dating back to the 14th century. The institutional records include Council and Committee minutes from the 1870s to the present day, constitutional records, membership records, correspondence, photographs, films, medals and portraits. They are an excellent source of information on the history of the IET, the growth of electrical engineering and the history of past presidents and notable members. The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has over 168,000 members worldwide in 150 countries. IET members operate almost 100 Local Networks as well as 22 Technical and Professional Networks. The IET was formed in March 2006 by a merger of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) and the Institution of Incorporated Engineers (IIE).