Thushara De Silva M

Thushara De Silva M

Researcher III-Model Engineering


Thushara De Silva is a researcher, primarily working with production cost modeling and power system operation planning models to understand the power grid operation with increasing contributions from renewable energy. Some of her research focus is also on hydropower operation in high-renewable power grids since water resources planning is associated with several nonpower constraints.

Research Interests

High renewable power grid operation analysis

Hydropower scheduling and optimization 

Interactions between hydropower, the power grid, and the environment

Load forecasting


Ph.D., Environmental Engineering, Vanderbilt University

M.Eng., Electrical Engineering, University of Moratuwa

B.Sc., Electrical Engineering, University of Moratuwa

Professional Experience

Energy Analysis Engineer, NREL (2019–Present)

Research Assistant, Vanderbilt University (2015–2019)

Electrical Engineer, Ceylon Electricity Board (2004–2015)

Associations and Memberships

Member, American Geophysical Union (AGU)

Member, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Member, Informs

Featured Work

Projecting Future Colorado River Basin Water and Hydropower Operations, AGU Fall Meeting (2022)

Hydropower Operation in Future Power Grid With Various Renewable Power Integration, Renewable Energy Focus (2022)

Shifts in Hydropower Operation to Balance Wind and Solar Will Modify Effects on Aquatic Biota, Water Biology and Security (2022)

The Role of Regional Connections in Planning for Future Power System Operations Under Climate Extremes, Earth’s Future (2022)

Reliability and Resiliency in South Asia's Power Sector - Pathways for Research, Modeling, and Implementation, NREL Technical Report (2022)

Power Grid and Ecological Trade-Offs in a Power Grid with a High Proportion of Variable Renewables, HydroVision International Conference (2022)

Load Forecasting for the Moroccan Electricity Sector, NREL Technical Report (2021)