Fabrizio Dabbene (CNR-IEIIT, Italy) and Yasumasa Fujisaki (Osaka University, Japan) are Principal Investigators for the Joint International Lab COOPS (Cooperative Control for Energy Management Systems), National Research Council of Italy (CNR) and Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), 2015-2017. Roberto Tempo (CNR-IEIIT, Italy) has been the Italian Principal Investigator of COOPS for the years 2015-2016. Only four Labs have been approved by the National Research Council of Italy.

The Joint International Lab COOPS aims to continue and enhance a long-term successful cooperation between CNR-IEIIT and several Japanese researchers. The focal point of the lab is to develop novel tools and algorithms for Cooperative Control of Energy Management Systems, which is a strategic area for industrial and social applications. The lab is established as a satellite activity of the Japanese project of “Creation of Fundamental Theory and Technology to Establish a Cooperative Distributed Energy Management System and Integration of Technologies Across Broad Disciplines Toward Social Application”. This project belongs to the research program JST CREST (Core Research Evolutional Science and Technology), which represents a core research program of the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) for developments in both fundamental science and technology transfer. The presence of the CREST industrial partner Mitsubishi Electric Corporation certainly guarantees viability check of the obtained results in a short-term horizon. The lab also has the objective to establish international collaborations on key areas, such as energy management systems.

It is well-known that control systems are playing a prominent role when dealing with the integration of a variety of diverse energy sources, both traditional and renewable. The activities of the international lab COOPS is focused on cooperative control for energy management systems, with emphasis on the development of robust and computationally efficient algorithms. In particular, some challenges include reliability, robustness and cooperation of  a heterogeneous collection of physical and information devices to provide an accurate forecast of the demand and the supply of energy to be distributed to customers. These systems need to be connected on the Internet and therefore they require the development of tools and algorithms for cyber-security. In particular, one of the activities of the lab COOPS aims at developing distributed methods for detection of cyber attacks against the power grid.