Defending the Power Grid

Electrical and computer engineering Assistant Professor JK Wang and her doctoral student Christian Moya, working in the Electric Power Grid Research Group at Ohio State, are finding mathematical solutions to create safer power grids. Their method: work backward.

“The purpose of this research is to enable us to defend potential cyber-attacks to the power grid,” Wang says. “We need to be smarter than the [hackers] and try to figure out what they would do.”

Wang decided to approach the research from the perspective of the hacker and ask questions like, “How would they infiltrate the power grid?” and, “What needs to be improved to stop that breech?”

Wang's goal is to provide insights to power utilities and planners to help create a safer cyber physical system.