Manuel García Plaza, Developer in Madrid, Spain
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Manuel García Plaza

Verified Expert  in Engineering

Energy Management Systems Developer

Location
Madrid, Spain
Toptal Member Since
March 20, 2023

Manuel has 12 years of experience developing control algorithms for power plant controllers and energy management systems for Grid Codes and customer specification compliance. He's designed, implemented, and validated software for modeling and controlling power systems, wind and photovoltaic systems, the transport sector, energy storage system applications, and electrochemical batteries while handling medium and high-level electrical systems, microgrids, and power plants.

Availability

Part-time

Preferred Environment

MATLAB

The most amazing...

...project I've supervised includes power converters and a power plant controller at a photovoltaic plant of 48,5MW in Blandenboro, NC, USA.

Work Experience

Power Plant Control Algorithms Section Manager

2018 - PRESENT
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy
  • Designed, implemented, and validated control algorithms for the power plant controller. Executed validation techniques, unit testing, CI/CD, and DevOps practices.
  • Acted as a software architect, executing high-level design choices and trials to enforce technical standards, like software coding standards. Performed architectural and business vision and specifications coordination between SCADA-EMS-PPC systems.
  • Coordinated and managed the portfolio of a technology development project related to data science and hybrid control techniques applied to the Power Plant Controller as a project manager.
  • Framed the technology project with AI, ML, deep learning, data diagnosis, energy storage system in grid applications (arbitrage, smoothing, peak-shaving, and curtailment), energy storage sizing and behavior, and advanced control algorithms.
  • Managed people in the technical section. Represented the technical section in internal and external meetings and events. Participated in the definition and governance of the technical unit budget.
  • Recruited people for the section while defining requested profiles and performing candidate selection. Guided the section's workforce acting as a technical reference.
Technologies: MATLAB

Advanced Consultant/Engineer

2017 - 2018
Altran
  • Involved in developing the power plant controller in connection with wind and photovoltaic energy and energy storage systems. Delivered results in specific areas of work, namely the ones mentioned below.
  • Created and coordinated solutions to customer problem reports as a coordinator and scrum master of a power control algorithms development group focused on customer specifications for power plant control, energy management systems, and SCADA products.
  • Designed and implemented power plant controller algorithms focused on Grid Code compliance for many countries.
  • Simulated the behavior and the electrical response of power plants through hardware-in-the-loop techniques.
  • Designed software architecture and high-level software. Performed incident resolution, created debugging tools, and provided subsequent analysis of results.
  • Readjusted and parameterized regulators associated with many emulated elements such as wind turbines, STATCOM, OLTC, VSR, capacitors, and inductance banks.
Technologies: MATLAB

Product Engineer

2016 - 2017
Gran Solar
  • Developed and supervised the industrialization of a power converter of 200kVA intended for the energy dispatch of photovoltaic systems and flow batteries of 105kW.
  • Designed and implemented low-level algorithms for power converters considering the design of certification tests, European and American regulations, IEC, and UL.
  • Built an algorithm intended for medium and high-level control of electrical systems, microgrids, and power plants. These carry out the functions of the power plant controller, SCADA, and energy management system compliant with the Grid Code.
  • Supervised and started-up power converters and a power plant controller for a photovoltaic plant of 48,5MW in Blandenboro, NC, USA. Designed and implemented algorithms related to battery management systems.
Technologies: MATLAB

Doctoral Researcher

2015 - 2016
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
  • Designed and implemented energy conversion power systems for different energy storage systems. Studied different types of power converter controls. Designed and built a battery management system using software and hardware-in-the-loop techniques.
  • Implemented and optimized the code of the algorithms in C and C++. Started characterized and compliance protocols for electrochemical batteries, focusing the study on lithium-ion batteries, supercapacitors, and flow batteries.
  • Participated in the project RETOS 2015, "Total Photovoltaic Platform," aiming to provide photovoltaic plants with greater manageability by collaborating with companies like IPS, Ingenia, PV Hardware, Gransolar, and IMDEA (an energy institute).
Technologies: MATLAB

Research Personnel

2010 - 2015
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
  • Worked on the power control systems research group in preparation for my PhD thesis: "Contribution of storage systems to power system stability and ancillary services."
  • Developed different test benches composed of power converters working as inverters, rectifiers, and boost/buck DCDC converters.
  • Operated on systems that allowed the energy exchange between the grid and a battery stack—available in the laboratory—to emulate different services and applications of energy storage systems for the electrical grid.
  • Implemented different conventional control techniques. The real-time implementation of process controls and regulation systems was carried out on a control system ds1006 of dSPACE.
  • Executed different communication protocols, mainly serial communication RS232 (Recommended Standard 232), to assemble the various test benches.
  • Studied the dynamic response of the fundamental technologies of electrochemical lead-acid, lithium-ion, and nickel-cadmium batteries.
  • Designed, developed, and implemented software for new models and algorithms for electrochemical batteries, carrying out tests through hardware-in-the-loop techniques.
  • Researched different hybrid battery storage systems typologies in electric vehicles and ancillary service applications.
Technologies: MATLAB

Energy Management System, Power Plant Controller, and SCADA for a Photovoltaic Plant

This project involved supervising the industrialization of a 200kVA power converter for energy dispatch in photovoltaic systems and flow batteries, ensuring compliance with European and American regulations.

I worked on designing and implementing algorithms for power converters, focusing on both low-level and medium/high-level control. I also developed algorithms for power plant controllers, SCADA, and energy management systems, all essential for meeting the Grid Code. In addition, I supervised the start of power converters and power plant controllers at a 48.5MW photovoltaic plant in Blandenboro, NC, USA. Finally, I designed and implemented algorithms related to battery management systems.
2010 - 2015

PhD in Electrical, Electronic and Automation Engineering

University Carlos III of Madrid - Madrid, Spain

2008 - 2010

Master's Degree in Technology and Energy Resources

Rey Juan Carlos University - Madrid, Spain

2003 - 2008

Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Technology Engineering

University of Alcalá - Madrid, Spain

Tools

MATLAB

Languages

Simulink, Python, C++, C#

Other

Renewable Energy, Energy Storage, Energy Management, Power Plants, Battery Management Systems, Electronics

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