Resilience Science and Design

Understanding the nuances of power system vulnerabilities and financing resilience solutions are barriers to implementing resilient systems. NREL's research is overcoming these barriers through robust resilience science and energy modeling.

People planting vegetables in ground in front of solar panels.


  • Systems design and engineering
  • Financing for resilient energy systems
  • Renewable energy integration for resilience
  • Hardening and designing resilient renewable energy and hybrid systems
  • Probabilistic modeling for resilience analyses


Islandable Microgrids

In a partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense Environmental Security Technology Certification Program, NREL trialed several competing designs for a distributed military microgrid on a replica off-grid base at the NREL campus in Colorado. Participants validated their designs for islandable microgrids that can provide power during a long-duration outage at a reasonable cost. This project was made possible by the research platform Advanced Research for Integrated Energy Systems.

Real-Time Resilience of Energy Systems

NREL researchers have been developing analytical foundations for resilience to represent the real-time resilience of energy systems. Researchers are developing a multidimensional representation of network resilience that can identify contingencies and steer the system through disruption events. This work is being applied to autonomous energy systems, among other research areas.

Validating Resilient Designs in Buildings

NREL worked with the Department of Energy’s Building Technologies Office to discover how energy-efficient building designs could increase resilience. NREL simulated buildings during heat waves and cold snaps in representative cities to understand the impacts of extreme temperature on building occupants. This research resulted in a standardized methodology to quantify the net resilience impacts of building designs.


Enhancing Resilience in Buildings Through Energy Efficiency, NREL Technical Report (2022)

Adapting Existing Energy Planning, Simulation, and Operational Models for Resilience Analysis, NREL Technical Report (2020)

Microgrid-Ready Solar PV—Planning For Resiliency, NREL Fact Sheet (2017)

Resilient Renewable Energy Microgrids, NREL Presentation (2017)

Increasing Resiliency Through Renewable Energy Microgrids, Journal of Energy Management (2017)


NREL values its partnerships for furthering research and deployment of effective resilience solutions. Our partnerships include federal agencies, states, local governments, international governments, and the private sector. Learn more about partnering with NREL.


Eliza Hotchkiss

Senior Resilience Analyst and Group Manager, Resilient Systems Design and Engineering Group