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Title: Reducing Cascading Failure Risk by Increasing Infrastructure Network Interdependence

Abstract

Increased coupling between critical infrastructure networks, such as power and communication systems, has important implications for the reliability and security of these systems. To understand the effects of power-communication coupling, several researchers have studied models of interdependent networks and reported that increased coupling can increase vulnerability. However, these conclusions come largely from models that have substantially different mechanisms of cascading failure, relative to those found in actual power and communication networks, and that do not capture the benefits of connecting systems with complementary capabilities. In order to understand the importance of these details, this paper compares network vulnerability in simple topological models and in models that more accurately capture the dynamics of cascading in power systems. First, we compare a simple model of topological contagion to a model of cascading in power systems and find that the power grid model shows a higher level of vulnerability, relative to the contagion model. Second, we compare a percolation model of topological cascading in coupled networks to three different models of power networks coupled to communication systems. Again, the more accurate models suggest very different conclusions than the percolation model. In all but the most extreme case, the physics-based power grid models indicatemore » that increased power-communication coupling decreases vulnerability. This is opposite from what one would conclude from the percolation model, in which zero coupling is optimal. Only in an extreme case, in which communication failures immediately cause grid failures, did we find that increased coupling can be harmful. Together, these results suggest design strategies for reducing the risk of cascades in interdependent infrastructure systems.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5]
  1. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Computational Engineering Division
  2. The MITRE Corporation, McLean, VA (United States)
  3. The MITRE Corporation, McLean, VA (United States); Univ. of Vermont, Burlington, VT (United States). Vermont Complex Systems Center
  4. Univ. of Vermont, Burlington, VT (United States). Vermont Complex Systems Center; Univ. of Vermont, Burlington, VT (United States). Dept. of Mathematics & Statistics
  5. Univ. of Vermont, Burlington, VT (United States). Vermont Complex Systems Center; Univ. of Vermont, Burlington, VT (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Biomedical Engineering
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1349000
Report Number(s):
LLNL-JRNL-680884
Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-07NA27344; ECCS-1254549; IIS-1447634
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 7; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
42 ENGINEERING; 24 POWER TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; 97 MATHEMATICS AND COMPUTING; Complex networks; Computational science; Energy grids and networks

Citation Formats

Korkali, Mert, Veneman, Jason G., Tivnan, Brian F., Bagrow, James P., and Hines, Paul D. H. Reducing Cascading Failure Risk by Increasing Infrastructure Network Interdependence. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1038/srep44499.
Korkali, Mert, Veneman, Jason G., Tivnan, Brian F., Bagrow, James P., & Hines, Paul D. H. Reducing Cascading Failure Risk by Increasing Infrastructure Network Interdependence. United States. doi:10.1038/srep44499.
Korkali, Mert, Veneman, Jason G., Tivnan, Brian F., Bagrow, James P., and Hines, Paul D. H. Mon . "Reducing Cascading Failure Risk by Increasing Infrastructure Network Interdependence". United States. doi:10.1038/srep44499. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1349000.
@article{osti_1349000,
title = {Reducing Cascading Failure Risk by Increasing Infrastructure Network Interdependence},
author = {Korkali, Mert and Veneman, Jason G. and Tivnan, Brian F. and Bagrow, James P. and Hines, Paul D. H.},
abstractNote = {Increased coupling between critical infrastructure networks, such as power and communication systems, has important implications for the reliability and security of these systems. To understand the effects of power-communication coupling, several researchers have studied models of interdependent networks and reported that increased coupling can increase vulnerability. However, these conclusions come largely from models that have substantially different mechanisms of cascading failure, relative to those found in actual power and communication networks, and that do not capture the benefits of connecting systems with complementary capabilities. In order to understand the importance of these details, this paper compares network vulnerability in simple topological models and in models that more accurately capture the dynamics of cascading in power systems. First, we compare a simple model of topological contagion to a model of cascading in power systems and find that the power grid model shows a higher level of vulnerability, relative to the contagion model. Second, we compare a percolation model of topological cascading in coupled networks to three different models of power networks coupled to communication systems. Again, the more accurate models suggest very different conclusions than the percolation model. In all but the most extreme case, the physics-based power grid models indicate that increased power-communication coupling decreases vulnerability. This is opposite from what one would conclude from the percolation model, in which zero coupling is optimal. Only in an extreme case, in which communication failures immediately cause grid failures, did we find that increased coupling can be harmful. Together, these results suggest design strategies for reducing the risk of cascades in interdependent infrastructure systems.},
doi = {10.1038/srep44499},
journal = {Scientific Reports},
number = ,
volume = 7,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Mar 20 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Mon Mar 20 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

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  • Concepts from Complexity Science are valuable and allow a simulation approach for critical infrastructures that is flexible and has wide ranging applications.
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