Wesley Cole is a member of the Economics and Forecasting Group in the Grid Planning and Analysis Center.

Areas of Expertise

Capacity expansion modeling of the U.S. electricity sector
Renewable energy integration
Analysis of integrated energy systems

Research Interests

Energy storage in capacity expansion models
Interaction of rooftop PV deployment with the greater electricity sector
Impacts of policies on the evolution of the electricity sector
Interactions of the natural gas supply chain with the deployment of renewable energy technologies


Ph.D. in chemical engineering, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, 2014
B.S. in chemical engineering, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, 2010

Prior Work Experience

Assistant Instructor, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX (2013)
Research Intern, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO (2012)
Research Intern, Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID (2010)
Research Assistant, Wildland Fire Laboratory, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT (20082010)

Featured Publications

Cole, Wesley, Trieu Mai, James Richards, Paritosh Das, and Paul Donohoo-Vallett. 2017. 2017 Standard Scenarios Report: A U.S. Electricity Sector Outlook. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-68548. View the associated slide deck.

Cole, Wesley, Bethany Frew, Pieter Gagnon, James Richards, Yinong Sun, Jarett Zuboy, Michael Woodhouse, and Robert Margolis. 2017. SunShot 2030 for Photovoltaics (PV): Envisioning a Low-cost PV Future. Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-68105. View the associated slide deck.

Cole, Wesley, Cara Marcy, Venkat K. Krishnan, and Robert. Margolis. 2016. "Utility-Scale Lithium-Ion Storage Cost Projections for Use in Capacity Expansion Models". In 2016 North American Power Symposium (NAPS), 1–6. Denver, CO.

Cole, Wesley, Haley Lewis, Ben Sigrin, and Robert Margolis. Interactions of Rooftop PV Deployment with the Capacity Expansion of the Bulk Power System". Applied Energy 168 (April 2016): 473-81. doi:10.1016/j.apenergy.2016.02.004.

Cole, Wesley, Kenneth B. Medlock III, Aditya Jani. "A View to the Future of Natural Gas and Electricity: An Integrated Modeling Approach". Energy Economics (March 2016): In press. doi:10.1016/j.eneco.2016.03.005.

Cole, Wesley, Trieu Mai, Kelly Eurek, Daniel C. Steinberg, and Robert Margolis. "Considering the Role of Solar Generation under Rate-Based Targets in the EPA's Proposed Clean Power Plan". Paper presented at Energy Policy Institute's Fifth Annual Energy Policy Research Conference. The Electricity Journal 28, no. 8 (October 2015): 20-28. doi:10.1016/j.tej.2015.09.002.

Full list of Wesley Cole publications (NREL).