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2008 International Conference on Computer Science and Software Engineering

Methodological Priority List for Unit Commitment Problem


Yang Tingfang
School of Electrical & Information Engineering, Changsha University of Science and Technology, 410017, Changsha, P.R.China.
ytfhust@yahoo.cn
AbstractIn the modern competitive electricity supply industry, there is a renewed interest in algorithms that can provide fast and optimal solutions for savings in operation costs. A novel methodological strategy incorporating the priority list is proposed to provide efficient solutions. Thus, we call the proposed method as Methodological Priority List (MPL) method. The MPL is simpler and more efficient than conventional priority list method. Problem formulation of the Unit Commitment (UC) takes into consideration the minimum up (MU) and minimum down (MD) time constraints, start up cost and spinning reserve, and is defined as the minimization of the total objective function while satisfying all the associated constraints. The Economic Dispatch (ED) is solved using the lambda iteration method. The simplicity of the MPL and fast calculation of ED leads to a methodological and competent method in comparison with conventional method. MPL provides deterministic solution, a criterion preferred for industrial applications. Also, it does not encounter premature convergence and is more reliable. Keywords-Methodological Priority List (MPL) Unit CommitmentEconomic Dispatchdeterministic solution

T. O. Ting
Department of Electrical Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

I. INTRODUCTION Unit commitment (UC) plays an important role in daily operation planning of power systems. The objective of the UC problem is the minimization of the total operating cost of the generating units subject to some system and unit constraints. The solution of the UC problem involves a complex procedure as it implies the simultaneous solution of two sub-problems; the mixed integer nonlinear programming of determining the on/off state of the generating units for each hour of the dispatch period and the quadratic programming problem of dispatching the forecasted load among them, which is also known as Economic Dispatch (ED). Dynamic Programming (DP) [1] and Lagrangian Relaxation (LR) [2] have been used to solve the UC problem. The LR method can provide fast computation of solution for large scale system. However, the dual nature of the method often distorts the feasibility of the solution obtained. The priority list (PL) method has been applied in many existing probabilistic methods to solve the UC problem. The PL method is simple and fast, but it results in suboptimal solutions. Recently the realm of evolutionary algorithms has attracted much interest. The evolutionary programming-based Tabu search is proposed in [3] to solve UC problem. Further, an

effective hybrid Particle Swarm Optimization (HPSO) is proposed in [4]. The unique features of priority list method have attracted continuous development and improvement of the method. The priority list method is embedded in Tabu search [5] for faster speed. The same strategy is done in [6] by incorporating the priority list in Evolutionary Algorithm (PL EA) to solve large scale unit commitment problem. The Extended Priority List (EPL) in [7] is one of the most significant works in dealing with priority list method. The main drawback in the above methods is that the final solution obtained is somehow nondeterministic. Owing to this drawback, a more efficient technique has been developed in this work by incorporating some highly efficient methodological procedures based on priority list method to solve UC problem. Henceforth, the proposed methodology is called the Methodological Priority List (MPL). MPL does not encounter the said disadvantage; the solutions obtained are deterministic. To be certain of the proposed methodology, a numerical comparison is done with the existing methods, showing the improvements in total cost in comparison with many existing methods. Besides, the proposed MPL has a record of fastest method in computational speed. The deterministic characteristic of MPL adds extra advantage to the proposed algorithm, an entity preferred in many industrial applications. II. UNIT COMMITMENT PROBLEM A. Problem Formulation In this section, we first formulate the UC problem. The objective of the UC problem is the minimization of the total production costs over the scheduling horizon. Therefore, the objective function is expressed as the sum of fuel and start-up costs of the generating units. For N generators, the operation cost is defined mathematically as shown in eqn. (1).
TPC N =

[F (P
i i =1

ih ) + STi (1 U i ( h 1) )

] U ih

(1)

The operating cost accumulates over the total number of operating hours, H, where H = 24 which represents 24 hours of operation for each unit of generator. Therefore eqn. (1) is rewritten as:
TPC HN =

[F ( P
i h =1 i =1

ih ) + STi (1 U i ( h 1) )

U ih

(2)

In eqn. (1), TPCN is the total production cost for N units of generators whereas TPCHN in eqn. (2) denotes the total production cost for N units of generators over H number of

978-0-7695-3336-0/08 $25.00 2008 IEEE DOI 10.1109/CSSE.2008.714

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operating hours. Owing to the operational requirements, the minimization of the objective function is subject to the following constraints: (a) Power balance constraint

P U
ih i =1

ih

= Dh

(3)

(b) Spinning reserve constraint

P
i =1

i (max)U ih

Dh + Rh

(4)

(c) Generation limit constraint


Pi (min) Pih Pi (max)

9000 5 8 Unit 6 Pmax (MW) 80 Pmin (MW) 20 ($/h) 370 ($/MWh) 22.26 ($/MWh2) 0.00712 Min Up (h) 3 Min Down (h) 3 Hot start cost ($) 170 Cold start cost ($) 340 Cold start hrs (h) 2 Initial status (h) -3

Cold start cost ($) Cold start hrs (h) Initial status (h)

10000 5 8 Unit 7 85 25 480 27.74 0.0079 3 3 260 520 2 -3

1100 4 -5 Unit 8 55 10 660 25.92 0.00413 1 1 30 60 0 -1

1120 1800 4 4 -5 -6 Unit 9 Unit 10 55 55 10 10 665 670 27.27 27.79 0.00222 0.00173 1 1 1 1 30 30 60 60 0 0 -1 -1

(5) (6) (7)

(d) Minimum up-time constraint (MU)


X i on (t ) MU i

(e) Minimum down-time constraint (MD)


X i off (t ) MDi

where the notations used are as follows: TPC : Total production cost of the power generation, Fi(Pih) : Fuel cost function of the ith unit with generation output, Pih, at the hth hour. Usually, it is a quadratic polynomial with coefficients i, i and i as follows: (8) Fi ( Pih ) = i + i Pih + i Pih 2 N H Pih STi Uih Dh Rh Pi(min) Pi(max) MUi MDi Xion(t) Xioff(t) : : : : : : : : : : : : : Number of generators, Number of hours, The generation output of the ith unit at the hth hour, Start-up cost of the ith unit, The on/off status of the ith unit at the hth hour, and Uih = 0 when off, Uih = 1 when on, Load demand at the hth hour (set to 10% of Dh), Spinning reserve at the hth hour, Minimum generation limit of ith unit, Maximum generation limit of ith unit, Minimum up-time of ith unit, Minimum down-time of ith unit. Duration during which ith unit is continuously on. Duration during which ith unit is continuously off.

TABLE II LOAD DEMANDS FOR 24 HOURS Hour Dh Hour Dh 1 700 13 1400 2 750 14 1300 3 850 15 1200 4 950 16 1050 5 1000 17 1000 6 1100 18 1100 7 1150 19 1200 8 1200 20 1400 9 1300 21 1300 10 1400 22 1100 11 1450 23 900 12 1500 24 800

C. Error Calculation The error can be a good measure to determine the robustness of an algorithm. The error can give an idea of the degree of constraint violations. In this work, the error is calculated based on the following formula:
Err = C1 Dh PihU ih + C 2 (1 + sr ) Dh Pi (max)U ih
i =1 i =1 N N

(9)

where C1 and C2 are set to 1 whenever detecting violation of (3) and (4) respectively. The spinning reserve, sr is set to 10% therefore sr = 0.1 in the calculation. III. PRIORITY LIST METHOD IN SOLVING UNIT COMMITMENT PROBLEM The generation of initial solution is important, particularly, for the UC problem. The initial solution is usually generated at random. However this technique is difficult to get a feasible solution for the UC problem with many constraints, resulting in the quality of solution obtained being unsatisfactory. The priority list method is an efficient method to overcome this problem. A. Calculation of priority list The priority order shown in Table III is created based on each unit parameters. Generators with higher capacity will be at higher priority. If generators have the same capacity (same Pmax value), the one with lower heat rate (HR) will be of higher priority. The calculation for HR is given in (10). The calculated priority list and HR are shown in Table III. The priority list in this table can be checked by examining the Pmax and HR values on the left.

B. Data Specifications A benchmark system comprising of 10 generators is adopted as the test bed in this work. The data specifications are given in Table I with the demand over 24-hour period available in Table II. The same set of data was used in [3-7].
TABLE I GENERATOR SYSTEM OPERATOR DATA Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 Unit 4 Unit 5 Pmax (MW) 455 455 130 130 162 Pmin (MW) 150 150 20 20 25 ($/h) 1000 970 700 680 450 ($/MWh) 16.19 17.26 16.60 16.50 19.70 0.00048 0.00031 0.002 0.00211 0.00398 ($/MWh2) Min Up (h) 8 8 5 5 6 Min Down (h) 8 8 5 5 6 Hot start cost ($) 4500 5000 550 560 900

177

HRi =

Fi ( Pi max (t )) Pi max (t )

(10) (11)

Costi = HRi Fi Pih

Using the priority list in Table III, the units are committed based on their priority with the highest priority (lowest cost) being on first followed by other units in the list accordingly. Units are committed one after the other until the load demand plus the spinning reserve requirements represented by (4) are fulfilled in the priority list order during every time interval. The similar description of HR is given in [7, 10]. The fullload average production cost is simply the HR multiplied by fuel cost, shown in eqn. (11). The fuel cost equation has been given in eqn. (8).
TABLE III HEAT RATE (AT MAXIMUM POWER) HR Priority HR Priority Unit Unit P P Group max ($/MW) Order Group max ($/MW) Order 1 455 18.6 1 6 80 27.5 7 2 455 19.5 2 7 85 33.5 6 3 130 22.2 5 8 55 38.1 8 4 130 22.0 4 9 55 39.5 9 5 162 23.1 3 10 55 40.1 10

5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24

455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455

390 360 410 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 455 440 390 455 455 455 455 360 315 215

130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130 130

25 25 25 30 85 162 162 162 162 85 30 25 25 35 115 162 85 25

20 33 73 80 33 20

25 25 25 25 25 25

10 10 43 10

25 20 25 80 25 55 20 25

560 1100 0 0 860 60 10 60 10 10 60 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 28 10 490 0 0 0 0 Total 4090

20580.02 23487.04 23261.98 24150.34 28111.06 30117.55 31976.06 33950.17 30057.55 27251.06 24150.34 20895.88 20020.02 22792.33 25144.14 31986.64 27801.06 22387.04 17795.28 16052.85 566513.3

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 64 0 0 0 0 64

1000 1100 1150 1200 1300 1400 1450 1500 1400 1300 1200 1050 1000 1100 1200 1400 1300 1100 900 800 27.1 K

IV. PROPOSED METHODOLOGICAL PRIORITY LIST To improve the solution we now investigate the solution without considering the MU and MD constraints when turning on the generator based on the priority order. The MU and MD constraints are considered in calculation of startup cost to avoid the cold start cost when a generator is turned off for more than the summation of MD and cold start hour. he relevant unit is turned on continuously until the on state duration is equal to MU. This means that generators 6 and 7 must be turned on at 22nd hour as the MU=3 for both generators. The relevant results are discussed in the next section. V. RESULTS The results of MPL based on the above strategies are presented in Table VI. The total cost recorded in Table VI is $563977.1, a significant improvement over the conventional method.
TABLE VI METHODOLOGICAL PRIORITY LIST SOLUTION, TOTAL COST=$563977.1 Unit Start Hourly Power 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Err Cost Cost (MW) h 1 455 245 0 13683.13 0 700 2 455 295 0 14554.50 0 750 3 455 370 25 900 17709.45 0 850 4 455 455 40 0 18597.67 0 950 5 455 390 130 25 560 20580.02 0 1000 6 455 360 130 130 25 1100 23487.04 0 1100 7 455 410 130 130 25 0 23261.98 0 1150 8 455 455 130 130 30 0 24150.34 0 1200 9 455 455 130 130 85 20 25 860 28111.06 0 1300 10 455 455 130 130 162 33 25 10 60 30117.55 0 1400 11 455 455 130 130 162 73 25 10 10 60 31976.06 0 1450 12 455 455 130 130 162 80 25 43 10 10 60 33950.17 0 1500 13 455 455 130 130 162 33 25 10 0 30057.55 0 1400 14 455 455 130 130 85 20 25 0 27251.06 0 1300 15 455 455 130 130 30 0 24150.34 0 1200 16 455 310 130 130 25 0 21513.66 0 1050 17 455 260 130 130 25 0 20641.83 0 1000 18 455 360 130 130 25 0 22387.04 0 1100 19 455 455 130 130 30 0 24150.34 0 1200 20 455 455 130 130 162 33 25 10 490 30547.55 0 1400 21 455 455 130 130 85 20 25 0 27251.06 0 1300

B. Unit commitment based on priority list Based on the famous book from reference [11], the priority list schemes are built around a simple shut-down algorithm that might be adopted to obtain the results of conventional priority list method, presented in the following sub-section. C. Results of conventional priority list method The result of priority list method is shown in Table IV. The on state units are shaded in black with the dispatch given per unit. This result is an illustration of suboptimal solution which is the drawback in priority list method. The problem in this solution occurs when the generator 3 at hour 16 is not on. Hence, the generator has to be off for the following hours meeting a MD constraint of 5 hours for unit 3. Consequently, when the generator 3 is turned on again in hour 21, it involves startup cost and needs to be on unnecessarily for 23th and 24th hour for the following hours to meet the MU constraint. The reason that it is not necessary for the generator to be turned up at 23th and 24th hour is that the first two generators are able to meet the relevant reserve constraint. This is an illustration of the drawback of the priority list method. Further, the satisfaction of MD causes a violation to the reserve constraint at 20th hour, observing an error with a value of 64 calculated from eqn. (9). This reserve constraint cannot be avoided even when the remaining generators are all turned on. Note that turning on the right sided generators are expensive as they are of low priority and also it will involve startup cost, which further increases the total operating cost.
TABLE IV CONVENTIONAL PRIORITY LIST SOLUTION, TOTAL COST=$566513.3 Unit Start Hourly Power 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Err Cost Cost (MW) h 1 455 245 0 13683.13 0 700 2 455 295 0 14554.50 0 750 3 455 370 25 900 17709.45 0 850 4 455 455 40 0 18597.67 0 950

178

22 455 455 23 455 420 24 455 345

145 20 25 25

0 22735.52 0 17684.70 0 15427.42 Total 4090 563977.1

0 1100 0 900 0 800 0 27.1 K

VIII. CONCLUSION Application of MPL is a new approach in solving Unit Commitment problem. MPL incorporates more intelligent strategy with priority list as the backbone. The MPL is simple and more efficient than conventional priority list method. All the associated constraints are met in the simulation results. The simple and efficient technique to satisfy the MD constraint is new in this work. The Economic Dispatch (ED) is solved using the lambda iteration method. The simplicity of the MPL and fast calculation of ED leads to a methodological and competent method in comparison with conventional method. REFERENCES
[1] C. K. Pang, G. B. Sheble, and F. Albuyeh, Evaluation of Dynamic Programming Based Methods and Multiple Area Representation for Thermal Unit Commitment, IEEE Trans. Power App. Syst., vol. PAS100, no.3, pp. 1212-1218, 1981. F. Zhuang and F. D. Galiana, Toward a more Rigorous and Practical Unit Commitment by Lagrangian Relaxation, IEEE Trans. on Power Systems, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 763-772, 1988. C.C.A. Rajan and M.R. Mohan An evolutionary programming-based tabu search method for solving the unit commitment problem, IEEE Trans. Power Syst., vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 577-585, Feb 2004. T.O. Ting, M.V.C. Rao and C.K. Loo, A Novel Approach for Unit Commitment Problem via an Effective Hybrid Particle Swarm Optimization, IEEE Trans. Power Syst., vol 21, no. 1, pp. 1-8, Feb 2006. H. Mori and O. Matsuzaki, Application of priority-list-embedded Tabu search to unit commitment in power systems, Inst. Elect. Eng. Japan, vol. 121-B, no. 4, pp. 535-541, 2001. D. Srinivasan and J. Chazelas, A priority list-based evolutionary algorithm to solve large scale unit commitment problem, in Proc of Intl Conf on Power System Technology, vol 2, pp. 1746-1751, 2004. T. Senjyu, K. Shimabukuro, K. Uezato and T. Funabashi, A Fast Technique for Unit Commitment Problem by Extended Priority List, IEEE Trans. Power Syst., vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 882 888, May 2003.

VI. CONSTRAINTS SATISFACTION IN MPL Recently, several methods for handling infeasible solutions for continuous numerical optimization problems have emerged. Some of them are based on penalty functions. They differ, however, in how the penalty function is designed and applied to infeasible solutions. As scheduling of generators is a very risky task, we generate feasible solution which meets the (3) (7) constraints. A. Satisfying Power Demand via Lambda iteration In this paper, the calculation for economic load dispatch (ELD) is done using the lambda-iteration method. Therefore, the power demand is automatically satisfied using this method. The ELD calculation is stopped when the allowable error, which indicates that the total power generated minus the power demand is less than the number of participating generators divided by ten. In mathematical form, the lambda iteration is stopped when the following criteria is satisfied
TPowh Dh < N 1000

[2] [3] [4]

(13)

[5] [6] [7]

where TPowh is the total power generated at hour h whereas Dh is the demand at hour h. Note that the lambda-iteration is carried out per hour basis. The main advantage of this method is the very fast speed in calculating the optimal scheduling of generators. B. Spinning reserve constraint The evaluation of the system spinning reserve usually depends upon deterministic criteria. According to the most common criteria, the reserve should be at least equal to the capacity of the largest unit, or to a specific percentage of the hourly system load. The spinning reserve is vital to maintain the system as securely as possible. C. Satisfying the Generation Limit Constraints Since lambda iteration is used to obtain the scheduling of generators by solving the economic dispatch, the generation limit constraints are always satisfied. VII. NUMERICAL COMPARISONS The results of MPL are compared to other existing methods both in numerical values and time recorded. From this comparison, MPL records the best total cost ($563977) compared to other deterministic methods such as DP, LR and LRGA. The time recorded for MPL is exactly 0.037s and is the same for each run. This is indeed a very fast method, which is the best compared to technique such as EPL, recording a duration of 0.72s. This comparison is valid as the computer with the same speed, Intel Pentium4 CPU (1.5 GHz) is used for simulation, similar to the one in [7].

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