Advanced Research on Integrated Energy Systems Cyber Range

The Advanced Research on Integrated Energy Systems (ARIES) Cyber Range allows researchers and partners to study energy systems' interaction with and dependence on digital communication devices and networks.

NREL's unique energy system models and cosimulation capabilities are the differentiating factors in realizing proven cybersecurity protocols for increasingly renewable and distributed energy systems. To match the complexity of modern multilayer grids, the cyber range is designed to evaluate multiowner power systems and visualize interdependencies with digital communication devices and networks.

The cyber range provides the ability to virtualize, emulate, and visualize energy systems subjected to energy disruption scenarios, with the fidelity needed to represent future energy and telecommunication systems—from individual devices to regional grids.

Illustration of hardware at NREL facilities and digital twins of the devices in a virtual environment.

As part of the ARIES platform, physical devices from laboratories across NREL's campus can be integrated into the virtual world of the cyber range, allowing for hardware-, controller-, and human-in-the-loop studies. From electric vehicles, connected buildings, batteries, and utility distribution components in the Energy Systems Integration Facility to multi-megawatt wind turbines, solar photovoltaic arrays, and microgrid resources at NREL's Flatirons Campus, the capability offers unique and relevant resources to all users. The ARIES Cyber Range is powered by its Cyber-Energy Emulation Platform.

Advanced, At-Scale Simulation

With connection to over 20 MW of energy system hardware, the cyber range provides one of the most advanced simulation environments for the evaluation of emerging threats, natural hazards, and impacts of energy disruption. The use of real devices also reduces the possibility for modeling errors as evaluations are done with actual hardware. The cyber range supports proactive defense and automated response, improved situational awareness, and telecommunications innovation.


Multiple visualization systems are connected to the cyber range, including a large-format video wall and an immersive space for picturing data in 3D. These visualizations show how the power system and digital communication system dynamically interact throughout a given scenario, providing real-time awareness, historical analysis, and future planning and operation support.


The cyber range enables research, development, and market impact for many urgent needs, including:

Innovation and Evaluation

Clean Energy Cybersecurity Accelerator

Secure next-generation telecommunication


System-Scale Planning

Wind Cybersecurity Consortium

Cybersecurity for extreme fast electric vehicle charging

Solar Industry Cybersecurity Standards

Exercises and Workforce Development

U.S. Department of Energy CyberForce competition

North American Electric Reliability Corporation GridEx exercise

Scenario exercises with industry partners

Training and workforce development

Work With Us

NREL is partnering with utilities, national labs, technology providers, and federal agencies to evaluate a variety of system security and resilience applications using the Cyber Range.

Do you have a unique application that would benefit from the Cyber Range? Learn more about how to work with us.


Dane Christensen

Cybersecurity Science and Simulation Group Manager