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Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Office: BSE 1.514,
Phone # (210)-458-5568
Univ. of Texas at San Antonio
1 UTSA Circle, TX 78249
ahmad.taha@utsa.edu

Welcome to my homepage! I’m an assistant professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Texas at San Antonio. I am interested in understanding how complex dynamic systems operate, behave, and sometimes misbehave. Specifically,  I am interested in control and optimization of cyber-physical systems and the next generation of smart power grids, water networks, and (more recently) transportation systems. Please browse through the page. If something grabs your attention, please shoot me an email—I love discussing research ideas. I also like coffee, so we can always have coffee and talk research—a win-win scenario. I also have my coffee with whole-fat milk and some sugar, so if you want to start judging please start from now :-).

Updates, News:

  • [July 20] Our three submitted papers to the 2019 CDC in Nice, France have all been accepted! Will post pre-prints soon :). 
  • [July 12] Our paper on Robust Control for Renewable-Integrated Power Networks (available here) is accepted for publication in the IEEE Trans. on Control of Network Systems, Special Issue on Analysis, Control and Optimization of Energy System Networks.  
  • [July 10] My students and I are attending the 2019 ACC in Philly and are presenting our work on optimization, state estimation, and control of energy, water, and traffic networks:
    • Control of water networks. View preprint here.  
    • Characterizing nonlinearities in power grid models. View preprint here.  
    • State estimation in traffic networks. View preprint here.  
  • [July 1] CSS E-Letter, Issue 371 is now online.
  • [June 10] Our paper on mitigating GPS spoofing attacks on stationary receivers has been accepted for publication in the IEEE Control System Letters. Congrats to Junhwan Lee on his very first paper! View the paper here
  • [June 1] CSS E-Letter, Issue 370 is now online. Click here to view the E-Letter. 
  • [May 28] Visiting my hometown Beirut for couple of weeks!  
  • [May 10] Our paper on a peer-to-peer energy trading and grid management through blockchain is accepted for publication in the IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, Cybernetics: Systems. View the paper here. Congrats to Shen Wang on his very journal publication. 
  • [May 1] CSS E-Letter, Issue 369 is now online. Click here to view the E-Letter. 
  • [April 16-18] Attending the 2019 CPS Week and the International Conference on Cyber-Physical Systems (ICCPS) in Montreal.
  • [April 1] CSS E-Letter, Issue 368 is now online. Click here to view the E-Letter. 
  • [March 15] Our paper on the joint selection of sensors and actuators in linear networks has been accepted for publication in Automatica. Pre-print available here
  • [March 1] CSS E-Letter, Issue 367 is now online. Click here to view the E-Letter. 
  • [February 1] CSS E-Letter Issue 366 is now online. Click here if you want :-). 
  • [January 1] I am now the editor of IEEE Control Systems Society E-Letter. Here’s a link for Issue 365 of the CSS E-Letter. 

Bio & Interests

Short Biography

I was born in 1989 in the Lebanese capital, Beirut (Arabic: بيروت‎ Bayrūt), the midpoint of Lebanon’s gorgeous Mediterranean coast. Here’s my quick career highlights:

  • September 27, 2007: Started undergraduate education at the American University of Beirut (AUB). I majored in Electrical and Computer Engineering.
  • Summer 2010: Interned at  Laboratory of Information and Decision Systems (LIDS),  MIT. I worked on a  traffic testbed that would simulate people’s behavior when a large disruption hits a transportation network.
  • June 25, 2011: Graduated with a B.E. in ECE from AUB with two minors—one in Mathematics and another in Engineering Management.
  • Summer 2011: Started drinking coffee.
  • August 2011—August 2015: At Purdue, I was a teaching and research assistant with the Schools of ECE and Mechanical Engineering. I worked mainly on the security, optimization and control of uncertain cyber-physical systems, and applications in energy systems. I worked under the supervision of Dr. Jitesh Panchal on a project funded by NSF related to integrated analysis and design of complex dynamic systems with applications to smart grids.
  • Summer 2014: Went for a summer internship at the University of Toronto and collaborated with Dr. Josh Taylor. We worked on the problem of dynamic integration of steady and transient state operations in power networks.
  • Spring 2015: Interned at Argonne National Lab as a visiting researcher with the Center for Energy, Environmental, & Economic Systems Analysis where I worked with Jianhui Wang and Junjian Qi on cyber-security and control-related topics in smart-grids.
  • August 2015: Joined the ECE department at the University of Texas at San Antonio as an assistant professor.
  • Now: Still drinking coffee.

 

General Interests

My long term career goal is: (a) understanding how complex, nonlinear dynamic networks—present in infrastructure—behave and misbehave, (b) proposing algorithms to manage these systems, and (c) streamlining this research by making it accessible to a wide audience through contemporary tools and approaches. Specifically, I am interested in solving complex engineering problems and developing tools, protocols, and control algorithms that would ultimately empower policy makers and system operators to make better decisions about their systems, while enabling more resilient and tolerant systems against disturbances and unwanted attacks. I have applied the techniques I developed to sustainable energy grids, and more recently to water systems and transportation networks. 

Specific Research Interests

I am specifically interested in the following interrelated research areas:

  • Uncertain Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) and Nonlinear Dynamic Networks
  • Sensor and Control Node Selection/Placement Problems in Nonlinear Systems
  • Sustainable Energy Systems Operations, Stability, and Control
  • Cyber-Security of CPS, Smart Grids, Water Distribution Networks
  • Estimation and Control in Traffic Networks
  • Stability and Optimization of Dynamical Systems
  • Contamination Mitigation in Drink Water Networks

Some of the above interests are recent, and some date back to my early PhD studies. The word ‘interest’ has an expiry date, too. 🙂

Publications

Click here to visit my Google Scholar page.  The below list is not thoroughly updated.

78 entries « 1 of 2 »

2018

Bing Dong Zhaoxuan Li, Ahmad Taha Nikolaos Gatsis

Occupancy-based Buildings-to-Grid Integration Framework for Smart and Connected Communities Journal Article

Applied Energy, 219 , pp. 123-137, 2018.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Taormina, Riccardo; Galelli, Stefano; Tippenhauer, Nils Ole; Salomons, Elad; Ostfeld, Avi; Eliades, Demetrios; Aghashahi, Mohsen; Sundararajan, Raanju; Pourahmadi, Mohsen; Banks, Katherine; Brentan, B M; Campbell, Enrique; Lima, G; Manzi, D; Ayala-Cabrera, D; Herrera, M; Montalvo, I; Izquierdo, J; Luvizotto, E; Chandy, Sarin E; Rasekh, Amin; Barker, Zachary A; Campbell, Bruce; Shafiee, Ehsan M; Giacomoni, Marcio; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Abokifa, Ahmed A; Haddad, Kelsey; Lo, Cynthia S; Biswas, Pratim; Pasha, Fayzul M K; Kc, Bijay; Somasundaram, Saravanakumar Lakshmanan; 35, Mashor Housh; Ohar, Ziv

The Battle Of The Attack Detection Algorithms: Disclosing Cyber Attacks On Water Distribution Networks Journal Article

Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 2018, (in press).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad; Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Nugroho, Sebastian; and Gatsis, Nikolaos; Qi, Junjian

Robust Control Architectures for Renewable-Integrated Power Networks using Convex Approximations Journal Article

IEEE Transactions of Control of Network Systems, 2018, (under review).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian; Bazarfashan, Mohammadhafez; Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Qi, Junjian

Robust Control of Power Networks under Worst-Case Load and Renewables Uncertainty Inproceedings

American Control Conference, Milwaukee, 2018, 2018, (Accepted).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Wang, Shen; Taha, Ahmad; Wang, Jianhui

Blockchain-Assisted Crowdsourced Energy Systems Inproceedings

PES General Meeting 2018, Portland, Oregon, August 5--10. , 2018, (Accepted).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian; Taha, Ahmad; Summers, Tyler; Gatsis, Nikolaos

Simultaneous Sensor and Actuator Selection/Placement through Output Feedback Control Inproceedings

American Control Conference, Milwaukee, 2018, 2018, (Accepted).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Dong, Bing; Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Li, Zhaoxuan; Pipri, Ankur

Impact of Occupancy Based Buildings to Grid Integration on Frequency Regulation Inproceedings

American Control Conference, Milwaukee, 2018, (Accepted).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Ebrahimi, Nafiseh; Nugroho, Sebastian; Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Gao, Wei; Jafari, Amir

Dynamic Actuator Selection and Robust State-Feedback Control of Networked Soft Actuators Inproceedings

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Brisbane, Australia, 2018, 2018, (Accepted).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Taylor, Joshua A

Coupling Load-Following Control with Optimal Power Flow (OPF) Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 2018, (In Press.).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Khalajmehrabadi, Ali; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Akopian, David; Taha, Ahmad

Real-Time Rejection and Mitigation of Time Synchronization Attacks on the Global Positioning System Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, 2018, (In Press. ).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad F; Qi, Junjian; Wang, Jianhui; Panchal, Jitesh H

Risk Mitigation for Dynamic State Estimation Against Cyber Attacks and Unknown Inputs Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 9 (2), 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Qi, Junjian; Taha, Ahmad F; Wang, Jianhui

Comparing Kalman Filters and Observers for Power System Dynamic State Estimation with Model Uncertainty and Malicious Cyber Attacks Journal Article

IEEE Access, 6 , pp. 77155–77168, 2018.

Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Summers, Tyler; Nugroho, Sebastian

Time-varying sensor and actuator selection for uncertain cyber-physical systems Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Control of Network System, In Press, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Rishud, Paresh; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Vulnerability Analysis of Smart Grids to GPS Spoofing Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, In Press, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Khalajmehrabadi, Ali; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Akopian, David; Taha, Ahmad

Real-Time Rejection and Mitigation of Time Synchronization Attacks on the Global Positioning System Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad F; Taylor, Joshua A

Coupling Load-Following Control with OPF Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Wang, Shen; Taha, Ahmad; Wang, Jianhui

Blockchain-Assisted Crowdsourced Energy Systems Inproceedings

Proceedings of the IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting (PESGM), Portland, Oregon, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad F; Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Nugroho, Sebastian; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Qi, Junjian

Robust Control Architectures for Renewable-Integrated Power Networks using Convex Approximations Journal Article

arXiv preprint arXiv:1802.09071, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Dong, Bing; Li, Zhaoxuan; Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos

Occupancy-based buildings-to-grid integration framework for smart and connected communities Journal Article

Applied Energy, 219 , pp. 123–137, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian; Taha, Ahmad F; Summers, Tyler; Gatsis, Nikolaos

Simultaneous Sensor and Actuator Selection/Placement through Output Feedback Control Inproceedings

American Control Conference (ACC), Milwaukee, June 2018, arXiv preprint arXiv:1806.05481 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Ebrahimi, Nafiseh; Nugroho, Sebastian; Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Gao, Wei; Jafari, Amir

Dynamic Actuator Selection and Robust State-Feedback Control of Networked Soft Actuators Inproceedings

International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2018, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Bhounsule, Pranav A; Taha, Ahmad; Nugruho, Sebastian

Control Systems and Robotics Outreach to Middle-school Girls: Approach, Results, and Suggestions Journal Article

2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Taormina, Riccardo; Galelli, Stefano; Tippenhauer, Nils Ole; Salomons, Elad; Ostfeld, Avi; Eliades, Demetrios G; Aghashahi, Mohsen; Sundararajan, Raanju; Pourahmadi, Mohsen; Banks, Katherine M; others,

Battle of the Attack Detection Algorithms: Disclosing Cyber Attacks on Water Distribution Networks Journal Article

Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 144 (8), pp. 04018048, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Giacomoni, Marcio; Taha, Ahmad

A Fixed-Point Iteration for Steady-State Analysis of Water Distribution Networks Journal Article

arXiv preprint arXiv:1807.01404, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian; Bazrfashan, Mohammadhafez; Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Qi, Junjian

Robust Control of Power Networks under Worst-Case Load and Renewables Uncertainty Inproceedings

2018 Annual American Control Conference (ACC), pp. 6156–6161, IEEE 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Dong, Bing; Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Li, Zhaoxuan; Pipri, Ankur

Impact of Occupancy-Based Buildings-to-Grid Integration on Frequency Regulation in Smart Grids Inproceedings

2018 Annual American Control Conference (ACC), pp. 5399–5405, IEEE 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian A; Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Summers, Tyler H; Krishnan, Ram

Algorithms for joint sensor and control nodes selection in dynamic networks Journal Article

arXiv preprint arXiv:1811.11792, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Nugroho, Sebastian A; Taha, Ahmad F; Claudel, Christian

A Control-Theoretic Approach for Modeling, Classification, and Robust Traffic Density Estimation Journal Article

arXiv preprint arXiv:1812.02128, 2018.

BibTeX | Tags:

Dong, Bing; Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Li, Zhaoxuan; Pipri, Ankur

Systems and methods for optimizing building-to-grid integration Miscellaneous

2018, (US Patent App. 16/003,570).

BibTeX | Tags:

2017

Ayyagari, Krishna Sandeep; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Chance Constrained Optimization of Distributed Energy Resources via Affine Policies Inproceedings

2017 5th IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing, Montreal, Canada, 2017.

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, A F; Gatsis, N; Summers, T; Nugroho, S

Actuator selection for cyber-physical systems Inproceedings

2017 American Control Conference (ACC), pp. 5300-5305, 2017.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad; Chakrabarty, Ankush; Tavaragondi, Raviraj

DoTVeX: Dynamic Observer Toolbox using Convex Programming Journal Article

International Journal of Applied Mathematics and Computer Science (AMCS), 2017, (Under Review).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Li, Zhaoxuan; Dong, Bing; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Pipri, Ankur

Occupant Behavior driven Buildings-to-grid Integration Framework for Smart and Connected Communities Journal Article

Applied Energy, 2017, (Under Review).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Risbud, Paresh; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Vulnerability Analysis of Smart Grids to GPS Spoofing Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 2017, (In Press).

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Giacomoni, Marcio; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Identification of Cyber Attacks on Water Distribution Systems by Unveiling Low-Dimensionality in the Sensory Data Inproceedings

World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2017, 2017.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Giacomoni, Marcio; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Cyber Attacks Detection in Water Distribution Systems: Unveiling Low-Dimensionality in the Smart Water Meter Data Journal Article

Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management, 2017, (Under Preparation).

BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Dong, Bing; Pipri, Ankur; Li, Zhaoxuan

Buildings-to-Grid Integration Framework Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 2017, (In Press).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Summers, Tyler; Nugroho, Sebastian

Time-Varying Sensor and Actuator Selection for Uncertain Cyber-Physical Systems Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Control of Network Systems, 2017, (Under Review).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

Li, Zhaoxuan; Pipri, Ankur; Dong, Bing; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Yu, Nanpeng

Modeling, Simulation and Control of Smart and Connected Communities Inproceedings

The 15th International Conference of Building Performance Simulation Association, 2017.

Abstract | BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad; Nugroho, Sebastian; Summers, Tyler; Gatsis, Nikolaos

Dynamic Output Feedback Stabilization with Simultaneous Sensors and Actuators Selection Journal Article

Automatica, 2017, (Under Preparation).

BibTeX | Tags:

Dong, B; Taha, A; Gatsis, N; Li, Z; Pipri, A

Systems and Methods for Optimizing Buildings-to-Grid Integration Miscellaneous

2017, (U.S. Patent Application Number 62516830, provisional patent filed).

BibTeX | Tags:

Khalajmehrabadi, Ali; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Akopian, David; Taha, Ahmad

Real-Time Detection and Mitigation of Time Synchronization Attacks on the Global Positioning System Miscellaneous

2017, (Under review by the office of commercialization at UTSA).

BibTeX | Tags:

Taha, Ahmad F; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Summers, Tyler; Nugroho, Sebastian

Actuator Selection for Cyber-Physical Systems Inproceedings

2017 American Control Conference, Seattle, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Giacomoni, Marcio; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Identification of Cyber Attacks on Water Distribution Systems by Unveiling Low-Dimensionality in the Sensory Data Inproceedings

World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2017, pp. 660–675, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Bazrafshan, Mohammadhafez; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Taylor, Joshua A

Coupling Load-Following Stability with OPF Journal Article

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, In Press, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Pipri, Bing Dong Nikolaos Gatsis Ahmad Taha Nanpeng Yu Zhaoxuan Li Ankur F

Modeling, Simulation and Control of Smart and Connected Communities Inproceedings

The 15th International Conference of Building Performance Simulation Association, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Ayyagari, Krishna; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad

Chance Constrained Optimization of Distributed Energy Resources via Affine Policies Inproceedings

5th IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Li, Zhaoxuan; Pipri, Ankur; Dong, Bing; Gatsis, Nikolaos; Taha, Ahmad; Yu, Nanpeng

Modelling, simulation and control of smart and connected communities Journal Article

Building Simulation 2017, 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

Summers, Tyler; Ogunmolu, Olalekan; Gans, Nicholas; Renganathan, V; Kariotoglou, N; Kamgarpour, M; Lygeros, J; Li, C; Fathian, K; Rachinskii, D; others,

Robustness Margins and Robust Guided Policy Search for Deep Reinforcement Learning Inproceedings

IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Robots and Intelligent Systems,(Abstract Only Track), 2017.

BibTeX | Tags:

2016

Bazrafshan, M; Gatsis, N; Taha, A F; Taylor, J A

Augmenting the optimal power flow for stability Inproceedings

2016 IEEE 55th Conference on Decision and Control (CDC), pp. 4104-4109, 2016.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX | Tags:

78 entries « 1 of 2 »

Funding

Funded Projects*

  • Collaborative Research: Cherry-Picking Sensors and Actuators for Topologically Evolving Networked Dynamical Systems: Battling Contamination in Water Networks
    • Funding Agency: National Science Foundation
    • Total Amount: $450,000
    • Link: Click here and here
    • Role: PI, with Nikolaos Gatsis (co-PI), Marcio Giacomoni (co-PI), and Tyler Summers (PI at UT-Dallas)
  • Integrated Framework for Detection and Mitigation of GPS Spoofing Attacks in Smart Grids
    • Funding Agency: National Science Foundation
    • Total Amount: $399,934.
    • Link: Click here
    • Role: co-PI, with Nikolaos Gatsis (PI) and David Akopian (co-PI)
  • EAGER: Collaborative Research: Empowering Smart Energy Communities: Connecting Buildings, People, and Power Grids
    • Funding Agency: National Science Foundation
    • Total Amount: $260,000
    • Link: Click here and here
    • Role: co-PI, with Bing Dong (PI), Nikolaos Gatsis (co-PI), and Nanpeng Yu (co-PI)
  • Acquisition of Real-Time Simulator for Intelligent Power Networks in Operational Energy Applications
    • Funding Agency: Department of Defense
    • Total Amount: $280,410
    • Role: co-PI, with Hariharan Krishnaswami (PI) and Nikolaos Gatsis (co-PI)
  • Dynamic Cyber-Attack Detection and Mitigation for Secure Smart Grids
    • Funding Agency: UTSA Office of the Vice President for Research
    • Total Amount: $30,000
    • Role: PI, with Nikolaos Gatsis (co-PI) and Bing Dong (co-PI)
  • Control Systems Education and Outreach to Low-Income High-School Students in San Antonio
    • Funding Agency: IEEE Control Systems Society
    • Total Amount: $15,000
    • Role: PI, with Chunjian Qian (co-PI) and Pranav Bhounsule (co-PI)

*You can learn more about these projects by visiting the research projects page.