Demand Response & Forecasting: Keys to a Smarter Grid
The case for the smart grid is becoming exceedingly clear. Firstly, grid stability issues plague the national grid, as witnessed in critical events such as the Northeast blackout of 2003. Secondly, peak generation issues plague utilities and subsequently increase energy costs to all parties involved. Finally, outdated grid infrastructure limits the utility of clean and renewable generation sources, such as solar and wind, due to intermittency issues. The smart grid aims to solve these issues through comprehensive next-generation computerization of grid operations. A key aspect of the smart grid is demand response, referring to strategic curtailment of electricity load during periods of peak demand and duress. Demand response has the potential to alleviate all of the aforementioned grid complications, yet keen insights into customer behavior and consumption patterns are required to make informed policy and business decisions. Our work investigates strategies to best utilize demand response, including customer behavioral modeling, variable pricing programs, and demand forecasting.