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Paul Denholm

Photo of Paul Denholm

Paul Denholm is a member of the Grid Systems Analysis Group in the Strategic Energy Analysis Center.

Senior Analyst
On staff since October 2004
Phone number: 303-384-7488

Areas of Expertise

  • Modeling of electric power systems, including interaction of renewable and conventional energy technologies
  • Analysis of energy storage including thermal energy storage

Research Interests

  • Effects of large-scale renewable energy deployment in electric power systems
  • The role of grid flexibility in integrating renewable energy including energy storage, demand response and efficient market design


  • B.S. in physics, 1993, James Madison University
  • M.S. in instrumentation physics, 1995, University of Utah
  • Ph.D. in land resources/energy analysis and policy, 2004, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Prior Work Experience

  • Electrical engineer, Bardac Drives Corporation (1995-1999)

Featured Publications

Denholm, Paul, Victor Diakov, and Robert Margolis. 2015. Relative Economic Merits of Storage and Combustion Turbines for Meeting Peak Capacity Requirements under Increased Penetration of Solar Photovoltaics. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-64841.

Denholm, P., R. Margolis, B. Palmintier, C. Barrows, E. Ibanez, L. Bird, and J. Zuboy. 2014. Methods for Analyzing the Benefits and Costs of Distributed Photovoltaic Generation to the U.S. Electric Utility System. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-62447.

Denholm, P., J. Jorgenson, M. Hummon, D. Palchak, B. Kirby, O. Ma, and M. O'Malley. 2013. Impact of Wind and Solar on the Value of Energy Storage. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-60568.

Denholm, P., M. Kuss, and R.M. Margolis. "Co-Benefits of Large Scale Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle and Solar PV Deployment." Journal of Power Sources 236 (August 2013): 350-56. NREL/JA-6A20-54247. doi:10.1016/j.jpowsour.2012.10.007

Denholm, P., Y.H. Wan, M. Hummon, and M. Mehos. 2013. Analysis of Concentrating Solar Power with Thermal Energy Storage in a California 33% Renewable Scenario. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-58186.

Sioshansi, R., P. Denholm, and T. Jenkin. "Market and Policy Barriers to Deployment of Energy Storage." Economics of Energy and Environmental Policy 1, no. 2 (March 2012): 47-63. NREL/JA-6A20-53820. doi:10.5547/2160-5890.1.2.4

Denholm, P., and M. Hand. "Grid Flexibility and Storage Required to Achieve Very High Penetration of Variable Renewable Electricity." Energy Policy 39, no. 3 (March 2011): 1817-30. NREL/JA-6A20-49400.

Denholm, P., E. Ela, B. Kirby, and M. Milligan. 2010. Role of Energy Storage with Renewable Electricity Generation. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A2-47187.

Full list of Paul Denholm publications (NREL)