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COCOON: Cooperative Cyber Protection for Modern Power Grids

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The EU-funded Horizon Innovation Action (IA) project COCOON aims to deliver a practical cyber-physical systems solution for converged Electrical Power and Energy Systems (EPES) by bridging secure networked systems.

The convergence of Information Technology (IT) with Operational Technology (OP) environments for digitizing mission-critical stability and flexibility of Electrical Power and Energy Systems (EPES) operations as well as new Ancillary Services (AS) business markets through Distributed Renewable Energy Sources (DRES), entails a range of cybersecurity and resilience challenges.

To achieve a pragmatic and cooperative cyber-physical protection, COCOON brings an inter-disciplinary approach consisting of the synergy between networked systems and power systems engineering research with system operations over real setups. Through COCOON, cyber protection in EPES should a) function optimally and securely, b) natively provide inter-domain secure information exchange, c) address real-time power systems requirements for timely cyber-physical threat detection and mitigation, and d) enhance operator training for grid protection operations.

COCOON will deliver a unified protection scheme for interconnected Power Grids in Europe and the resulted outcomes will reach Technology Readiness Level 7 (TRL7) through demonstrations in real pilot of operational setups in Greece, Spain, and the Netherlands.

It is anticipated that the project’s outcomes will contribute towards prevention and detection of cyberattacks in the energy sector. As a result, there will be a decrease in loss caused by black-outs and cascading failures in interconnected grid setups and at the same time an increase of assurance for utility availability to citizens.

The COCOON project is coordinated by the University of Cyprus through the KIOS Research & Innovation Centre of Excellent and its consortium consists of 12 partners from 4 European countries and the UK, with expertise in networked systems, power systems engineering, cybersecurity, cyber-physical security, and grid operations. Hence, partners include 5 academic institutions, 3 European Distribution System Operators, 1 EU Regional Security Coordinator, the European Network for Cyber Security owned by several EU grid operators, and 2 SMEs.

Project’s website:

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101120221.

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