Key Note Abstracts

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christoph Bayer

Department of Process Engineering
Technical University of Applied Sciences Nürnberg

A Glimpse at Process Design and Information Systems

For an extended period of time, the process industries have been relying heavily on modeling and simulation to improve their plant designs. Commercial as well as proprietary software tools are used for the validation of design models against plant data (pilot plant, full-scale reference plant, etc.), its adaptation to site specifications and its economic optimization. Economics generally improve further as such plants are deeply integrated with site infrastructure and other production plants.

Currently, trends and new developments such as deep learning, system digitalization, integrated engineering tools and smart plants resonate strongly within industry. These developments could significantly alter existing process design methodologies, since greater complexities in design, construction and operation become manageable. In this context, this presentation aims at giving an overview about the state of methods, the tools in use and the path forward.


Dr. Darshana Muthumuni

Manitoba HVDC Research Centre, Canada

Power Outages and Large-Scale Renewable Energy Penetration

Electric power transmission systems spread across large geographic areas present significant challenges to the engineers. Operating the system stably while maintaining voltage and frequency variations within narrow tolerance margins require careful long term planning as well as short term operational planning.

These planning efforts of utility engineers are supported by significant research and development efforts of various international organizations. As a result of these planning efforts power system outages that impact widespread regions are very rare. Over the years, power system community has acquired significant experience related to the operation of traditional power systems where the generation is predominantly based on synchronous generators. However, the large scale penetration of renewable energy is expected to present new challenges. The renewably energy generation is interfaced to the transmission system with the use of power electronic converters. The dynamic response characteristics of power electronic based generation are much different from conventional generators. Specifically, the converter based generators do not contribute to the system inertia and thus can potentially make the power system vulnerable following system events such and line faults.

Power outages that effect large geographic regions are rare. In most reported cases of blackouts, the event was triggered by an improbable contingency. The keynote will present number of blackout events including a Sri Lankan example. Special protection or remedial action schemes that are typically used to help maintain system stability in the event of extreme contingencies will be outlined during the presentation. The key characteristics of renewable energy generators that can impact system stability will be presented.


Dr. Susumu Sugiyama

Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Environmental Friendly Polymer MEMS Technology

A sustainable and environmental friendly polymer MEMS (Micro Electro Mechanical Systems) fabrication technology has been developed using thermal imprinting and polishing process. MEMS structures with minimum size of 2μm and maximum aspect ratio of 15 were formed by the polymer MEMS fabrication technology. In this paper, PMMA (Polymethyl methacrylate) which has several advantages such as lower fabrication cost, more flexible, softer, transparency and biocompatible, etc., was used for MEMS actuators and a sensor utilizing small Young’s modulus and large thermal expansion coefficient. As the demonstration of the proposed polymer MEMS fabrication technology, comb drive electrostatic micro actuators, electrothermal micro actuators and a capacitive micro accelerometer were fabricated and characterized. For the reliability evaluation of the polymer MEMS, the fatigue testing of micro-sized PMMA structures have been carried out. It was able to obtain a fatigue life 1.0×107 cycles under 92MPa bending stress. The proposal polymer MEMS process has been confirmed it is promising as a sustainable MEMS production technology.


Prof. Srikantha Herath

United Nations University, Japan and
Team Leader, Centre for Flood Control and Water Management
Metro Colombo Urban Development Project, Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development

Urban Water Management in Metro Colombo

Flooding in Colombo and environs has for many years been hampering public life and obstructing traffic and commercial activities on a regular basis. The flooding has three major causes: a) lack of outfall capacity, b) lack of storage capacity, and c) bottlenecks in the river and canal system (bridges, culverts, narrow river bends, blocking bridge piers/abutments, pipeline crossings, etc.).

In 2012 the World Bank and the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) agreed upon a loan for a Metro Colombo Urban Development Project (MCUDP). The overall Project Development Objective of the Loan is to support the GoSL in:

  1. reducing flooding in the catchment of the Colombo Water Basin, and
  2. strengthening the capacity of local authorities in the Colombo Metropolitan area to rehabilitate, improve and maintain local infrastructure and services through selected demonstration investments.

The project consists of three components:

  1. Flood and Drainage Management.
  2. Urban Development, Infrastructure Rehabilitation and Capac- ity Building for Metro Colombo local authorities.
  3. Implementation Support.
Under the Loan a number of projects will be implemented in the fields of urban drainage and flood management/mitigation. This component has been split into two parts, one primarily aiming at the macro-drainage system, including the greater Colombo catchment/basin, and one aiming at the micro-drainage system, which primarily covers the metropolitan area. Measures include new diversions (canals or tunnels), widening of river/canal stretches, river-bend widening, smoothening or bend cut-offs, enlarging existing outfalls, construction of new gate structures, upgrading street drains, enlarging culverts, etc.

In addition, apart from structural measures a number of non-structural measures are being considered to strengthen the flood management capacity, such as a Real-Time Control (RTC) System, and/or a Flood Early Warning System (FEWS). In 2015, the Government of Sri Lanka announced an ambitious plan to develop the Western Province to a large Megalopolis, and a new ministry, the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development (MMWD) was established to implement the programme. Sri Lanka Land Reclamation and Development corporation that implement the Metro Colombo Development Project also comes under MMWD. For the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development assessing short term and long-term flood risks is important to safeguard its investment and ensure sustainable urban development.

Thus it was decided to enhance the scope of the proposed RTC to incorporate also current and future risk assessment. A new facility to handle Flood Control and Water Management is currently being setup that will:

  1. Develop an integrated flood control and water management in- formation system
  2. Provide early warning support for the Metro colombo area
  3. Develop optimal operational rules for the flood control facilities such as pumps and storage facilities considering also the potential storage and use water to make a pleasant urban environment.
  4. Assess current and evolving future risk to Megapolis from urban development as well as climate change.
This talk provides an overview of the scope and current status of this center.