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The flexibility of thermostatically controlled loads as a function of price notice time

Due to increased use of variable renewable energy sources, more capacity for balancing and ancillary services (AS) is required. Non-generating resources such as thermostatically controlled loads (TCLs) can arbitrage energy prices and provide AS due to their thermal energy storage capacity. This paper explores the impact of energy/AS price notice time, i.e. the time between when the price is announced and when it takes effect, on the TCL energy consumption and AS capacity bids, and quantifies trade-offs between notice time and flexibility. We first optimize the energy consumption and AS capacity offers at a given notice time, varied from 24 hours ahead to real-time. We then introduce uncertainty in TCL availability, formulate the stochastic optimization problem, and evaluate how the trade-offs change. We find that price notice time impacts TCL profits, but does not significantly affect the total AS capacity offered over the day. However, AS capacity offers are impacted by uncertainty, which is likely to increase with notice time.


Lars Herre    
KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Johanna L. Mathieu    
University of Michigan
United States

Lennart Söder    
KTH Royal Institute of Technology


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