California ISO Employs Grid Management Software For Energy Imbalance Market


Siemens has developed and implemented energy market management software to support the operation of the growing western energy imbalance market (EIM).

The EIM was launched by the California Independent System Operator (ISO) in November 2014 and allows utilities across a broad footprint to more efficiently exchange and share energy resources, including renewables such as wind and solar, based on generation and demand needs.

The Siemens software allows the ISO to analyze the energy requirements of the grid every five minutes and automatically determine the lowest-cost generation to meet demand while maintaining the security of the grid. The software provides system operators greater insight into the power grid to monitor generation and demand across the entire six-state EIM region, Siemens notes.

According to a February 2015 report, the EIM resulted in $5.97 million in benefits in the fourth quarter of 2014. A subsequent report in April 2015 shows $5.26 million in benefits were received for the first quarter of 2015. This resulted in a benefit of over $11 million in five months for the ISO and its first and current participant, Pacificorp, which serves customers in six western states. Additional EIM participation will show even greater benefits as the resource pool expands with greater amounts of cost-effective power.

Las Vegas-based NV Energy plans to begin participating later this year, while Puget Sound Energy in Washington and Arizona Public Service, which is based in Phoenix, have announced that they will enter the EIM in fall 2016.

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