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  1. Abstract Efficient energy consumption is crucial for achieving sustainable energy goals in the era of climate change and grid modernization. Thus, it is vital to understand how energy is consumed at finer resolutions such as household in order to plan demand-response events or analyze impacts of weather, electricity prices, electric vehicles, solar, and occupancy schedules on energy consumption. However, availability and access to detailed energy-use data, which would enable detailed studies, has been rare. In this paper, we release a unique, large-scale, digital-twin of residential energy-use dataset for the residential sector across the contiguous United States covering millions of households. The data comprise of hourly energy use profiles for synthetic households, disaggregated into Thermostatically Controlled Loads (TCL) and appliance use. The underlying framework is constructed using a bottom-up approach. Diverse open-source surveys and first principles models are used for end-use modeling. Extensive validation of the synthetic dataset has been conducted through comparisons with reported energy-use data. We present a detailed, open, high resolution, residential energy-use dataset for the United States. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2024
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 25, 2024
  3. Abstract

    The ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine has forced over eight million people to migrate out of Ukraine. Understanding the dynamics of forced migration is essential for policy-making and for delivering humanitarian assistance. Existing work is hindered by a reliance on observational data which is only available well after the fact. In this work, we study the efficacy of a data-driven agent-based framework motivated by social and behavioral theory in predicting outflow of migrants as a result of conflict events during the initial phase of the Ukraine war. We discuss policy use cases for the proposed framework by demonstrating how it can leverage refugee demographic details to answer pressing policy questions. We also show how to incorporate conflict forecast scenarios to predict future conflict-induced migration flows. Detailed future migration estimates across various conflict scenarios can both help to reduce policymaker uncertainty and improve allocation and staging of limited humanitarian resources in crisis settings.

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  4. Disease surveillance systems provide early warnings of disease outbreaks before they become public health emergencies. However, pandemics containment would be challenging due to the complex immunity landscape created by multiple variants. Genomic surveillance is critical for detecting novel variants with diverse characteristics and importation/emergence times. Yet, a systematic study incorporating genomic monitoring, situation assessment, and intervention strategies is lacking in the literature. We formulate an integrated computational modeling framework to study a realistic course of action based on sequencing, analysis, and response. We study the effects of the second variant’s importation time, its infectiousness advantage and, its cross-infection on the novel variant’s detection time, and the resulting intervention scenarios to contain epidemics driven by two-variants dynamics. Our results illustrate the limitation in the intervention’s effectiveness due to the variants’ competing dynamics and provide the following insights: i) There is a set of importation times that yields the worst detection time for the second variant, which depends on the first variant’s basic reproductive number; ii) When the second variant is imported relatively early with respect to the first variant, the cross-infection level does not impact the detection time of the second variant. We found that depending on the target metric, the best outcomes are attained under different interventions’ regimes. Our results emphasize the importance of sustained enforcement of Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions on preventing epidemic resurgence due to importation/emergence of novel variants. We also discuss how our methods can be used to study when a novel variant emerges within a population.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 28, 2024
  5. Abstract Non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) constitute the front-line responses against epidemics. Yet, the interdependence of control measures and individual microeconomics, beliefs, perceptions and health incentives, is not well understood. Epidemics constitute complex adaptive systems where individual behavioral decisions drive and are driven by, among other things, the risk of infection. To study the impact of heterogeneous behavioral responses on the epidemic burden, we formulate a two risk-groups mathematical model that incorporates individual behavioral decisions driven by risk perceptions. Our results show a trade-off between the efforts to avoid infection by the risk-evader population, and the proportion of risk-taker individuals with relaxed infection risk perceptions. We show that, in a structured population, privately computed optimal behavioral responses may lead to an increase in the final size of the epidemic, when compared to the homogeneous behavior scenario. Moreover, we find that uncertain information on the individuals’ true health state may lead to worse epidemic outcomes, ultimately depending on the population’s risk-group composition. Finally, we find there is a set of specific optimal planning horizons minimizing the final epidemic size, which depend on the population structure. 
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  6. In large agent-based models, it is difficult to identify the correlate system-level dynamics with individuallevel attributes. In this paper, we use inverse reinforcement learning to estimate compact representations of behaviors in large-scale pandemic simulations in the form of reward functions. We illustrate the capacity and performance of these representations identifying agent-level attributes that correlate with the emerging dynamics of large-scale multi-agent systems. Our experiments use BESSIE, an ABM for COVID-like epidemic processes, where agents make sequential decisions (e.g., use PPE/refrain from activities) based on observations (e.g., number of mask wearing people) collected when visiting locations to conduct their activities. The IRL-based reformulations of simulation outputs perform significantly better in classification of agent-level attributes than direct classification of decision trajectories and are thus more capable of determining agent-level attributes with definitive role in the collective behavior of the system. We anticipate that this IRL-based approach is broadly applicable to general ABMs. 
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  7. The power grid is going through significant changes with the introduction of renewable energy sources and the incorporation of smart grid technologies. These rapid advancements necessitate new models and analyses to keep up with the various emergent phenomena they induce. A major prerequisite of such work is the acquisition of well-constructed and accurate network datasets for the power grid infrastructure. In this paper, we propose a robust, scalable framework to synthesize power distribution networks that resemble their physical counterparts for a given region. We use openly available information about interdependent road and building infrastructures to construct the networks. In contrast to prior work based on network statistics, we incorporate engineering and economic constraints to create the networks. Additionally, we provide a framework to create ensembles of power distribution networks to generate multiple possible instances of the network for a given region. The comprehensive dataset consists of nodes with attributes, such as geocoordinates; type of node (residence, transformer, or substation); and edges with attributes, such as geometry, type of line (feeder lines, primary or secondary), and line parameters. For validation, we provide detailed comparisons of the generated networks with actual distribution networks. The generated datasets represent realistic test systems (as compared with standard test cases published by Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)) that can be used by network scientists to analyze complex events in power grids and to perform detailed sensitivity and statistical analyses over ensembles of networks. 
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  8. Residential consumers have become active participants in the power distribution network after being equipped with residential EV charging provisions. This creates a challenge for the network operator tasked with dispatching electric power to the residential consumers through the existing distribution network infrastructure in a reliable manner. In this paper, we address the problem of scheduling residential EV charging for multiple consumers while maintaining network reliability. An additional challenge is the restricted exchange of information: where the consumers do not have access to network information and the network operator does not have access to consumer load parameters. We propose a distributed framework which generates an optimal EV charging schedule for individual residential consumers based on their preferences and iteratively updates it until the network reliability constraints set by the operator are satisfied. We validate the proposed approach for different EV adoption levels in a synthetically created digital twin of an actual power distribution network. The results demonstrate that the new approach can achieve a higher level of network reliability compared to the case where residential consumers charge EVs based solely on their individual preferences, thus providing a solution for the existing grid to keep up with increased adoption rates without significant investments in increasing grid capacity.

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