Electric Load Forecasting

Electric Demand Forecasting

Electric load and demand forecasting involves the projection of peak demand levels and overall energy
consumption patterns to support an electric utility’s future system and business operations. Quanta
Technology is a global leader in research, development, and application of best practices in this field,
with a staff of industry-recognized experts including: H. Lee Willis and Julio Romero-Aguero and an
experience base of over 1000 projects spanning the past forty years. Quanta Technology provides
completed and documented load forecasts, utility load forecasting projects, load forecast improvement
projects, load forecast benchmarking, support, training, and load forecast expert testimony in a wide
range of specific load forecasting categories.

Contents

1. Spatial Load Forecasting
2. Small Area Forecasting
3. Distribution Load Forecasting
4. Transmission Load Forecasting
5. Load Forecasting for Integrated Resource Planning
6. Electric Revenue Forecasting
7. Multi-Scenario Load Forecasting
8. Weather Normalization
9. Training In Load Forecasting
10. Quanta Technology Experts in Load Forecasting
References and Resources

Spatial Load Forecasting
This involves the forecasting of peak load, forecasting of utility customer count, and forecasting of utility
customer energy consumption needs of an area, or spatial basis, sufficient to support the planning of
utility facilities that involve the siting of T&D equipment to serve local regions. The overall growth of a
utility’s peak demand might indicate that during the next decade it will need to add three substations to its
system in order to meet growing demand. But to the planners and engineers who have to develop plans
for those substations, a key element will be where? Where, within the utility system, will those new
substations be required. A spatial electric load forecast, sometimes called a geographic forecast,
provides a projection of electric peak, customer counts, and energy demand done with sufficient
geographic resolution to answer this where question.

Page 1

Spatial electric load forecasts must cover a period into the future that provides a good lead time for planners. Typically this means projecting peak loads of primary feeders for periods of three to ten years into the future. etc. In addition. Distribution Load Forecasting This is a form of spatial load forecasting that focuses on providing the information necessary to support power distribution planning. Spatial forecasts forecast load growth in each small area while taking into consideration to the extent needed information on load. Best practice in distribution load forecasting includes projection of weather normalized peak demand on a feeder basis for five to ten years into the future. Sometimes they are the irregular polygons defined by precinct boundaries or other geographic features and distinctions. a spatial resolution of at least 1/4th. the period must extend beyond that far enough that planners can evaluate if the additions being planned will have an economic and efficient service lifetime or need to be augmented/changed early in their service lifetimes. what load will be require along feeder reaches. a small area method that serially proceeds through each of several hundred feeders in a utility system. The use of small areas alone does not make a forecast spatial: all spatial forecasts are small area forecasts but not all small area forecasts are spatial. is done for each and every small area. Small Area Forecasting All spatial forecasts use the small area approach. so they can arrange additions in a timely and efficient manner. etc. is a small area method but not a spatial method. These areas might be the cells of a grid defined by a GIS system or a mapping coordinate system. Spatial resolution of a load forecast refers to the geographic detail it uses – the area size. Lee Willis and Dr. and perhaps projections and analysis of customer types. with spatial resolution (area detail) within each feeder area that meets planners’ needs to know how much load can be efficiently transferred between feeder areas. as for example in a demo-economic simulation that allocates growth among all areas in the utility service territory. and forecast all areas in a unified simultaneous manner.. The service area being studied is divided into a number of distinct areas and the load for each is forecast. By contrast. a distinct demand and energy forecast. H. Regardless. about 1/10th the size of the equipment service areas being planned is needed to provide effective planning of T&D systems. fitting a polynomial to each’s load history and projecting that trend into the future to produce a load forecast for that area. Quanta Technology staff are involved and chair industry working groups like the IEEE Power Engineering Society Planning and Implementation Committee. etc. or look at how each fits into and is affected by the overall system growth. This forecast does not analyze the interactions and patterns of growth among neighboring small areas. trends. which carries on an active internal program of R&D in distribution load forecasting. John Spare have worked with 500 utilities around the world on distribution load forecasting projects. and Page 2 . Generally. Our distribution load forecasting experts including Julio Romero-Aguero. They might could be the service areas of the feeders in a distribution system. and ideally. and conditions in all surrounding areas and for the mass of all small areas in the system. It produces several hundred essentially independent forecasts – each done without consideration of trends and interactions among the total system’s areas.

Our transmission load forecasting experts including Don Morrow. Lee Willis and Tom Gentile have worked with 200 utilities around the world on transmission load forecasting projects. and demand response. Best practice in transmission load forecasting includes projection of weather normalized peak demand on a substation or substation bus basis for five to thirty years into the future. Lee Willis and Tom Gentile have worked with 200 utilities around the world on transmission load forecasting projects. including the use of advanced energy efficiency models. H. Our company has an active internal program of R&D in the study of IRP load forecasting. load control. and regulatory scrutiny and hearings. etc. Typically this also means projecting peak loads of primary feeders for periods of three to ten years into the future. or in an area assigned to a possible new substation. public.provide regulatory support and expert testimony of load forecasting. and providing expert testimony on utility load forecasts including rate case support. public. Our company maintains an active internal program of practical and technical R&D in regional distribution load forecasting and planning including up-to-date benchmarking for distribution load forecasting practices and results and research into improved forecasting models. conservation. Quanta Technology staff are involved and chair industry working groups like the IEEE Power Engineering Society Planning and Implementation Committee. including best practice distribution load forecasting like INSITE and advanced distribution load forecasting methods like LoadSEER. Best practice methods use customer class analysis of energy consumption and end-use models and analysis of market penetration by appliance type. H. with spatial resolution (area detail) within each feeder area which meets planners’ needs to know how much load can be efficiently transferred between substation areas. Transmission Load Forecasting This a form of spatial load forecasting that focuses on providing the information necessary to support power transmission system planning. usually including hourly end use load curve models of power consumption by customer class and sub-class to analyze and project trends of future energy efficiency and demand response. Load Forecasting for Integrated Resource Planning (IRP) This involves projecting peak-load and demand-related trends in energy efficiency. including expert testimony on utility load forecasts including rate case support. Our project teams are experts in the use of a wide range of transmission load forecasting methods. and some of the widest industry Page 3 . in preparing and documenting load forecasts and providing support for managerial. Quanta Technology’s load forecasting project teams are experts in the use of a wide range of distribution load forecasting methods from regression trending load forecasting to land-use based simulation load forecasting. We maintain an active internal program of practical and technical R&D in regional transmission load forecasting and planning including up-to-date benchmarking for transmission load forecasting practices and results and research into improved forecasting models. and provide regulatory support and expert testimony of load forecasting. and regulatory scrutiny and hearings. what load would be in the area served by a bulk transmission line. Our distribution load forecasting experts including Don Morrow. as well as trends in the potential for as-yet unimplemented programs in those resources. and in preparing and documenting load forecasts and providing support for managerial.

economics.preparing and documenting the rational and results for defense and justification of managerial. Multi-Scenario Load Forecasting In many electric utility planning situations. for which no average plan can be built. Our project teams are experts in the use of a wide range of transmission load forecasting methods. but provide expertise and support on the forecasting of demand to partner companies who work with in these fields. our project teams have considerable experience in one thorny issue associated with multi-scenario forecasts . expertise based on field experience. Quanta’s Lee Willis pioneered multi-scenario forecasting for T&D planning in the 1980s. distributed resources. forecast projects. a single forecast based on the expectation of outcomes cannot be used for effective planning: different outcomes would require far different plans. and regulatory scrutiny and hearings. it standardizes historical and forecast peak and energy values on standard weather conditions to which the utility plans. Most utilities do not plan their systems to accommodate average (50%) weather. and regulatory scrutiny and hearings. and regulatory rates . conservation. This is not what Quanta Technology does. and changes in usage patterns. In particular. Quanta Technology provides methodology. in preparing and documenting load forecasts and providing support for managerial. it removes the effects of randomness of weather from historical trends in peak load and energy usage. Page 4 . or what-if load forecasts. so that they can study the system capability needs of the outcomes and develop contingency plans for all possible outcomes.scenario spatial load forecasts are needed to assure good planning. Most distribution load forecasts and many transmission load forecasts done by Quanta Technology involve multi-scenario elements. demand response. covering the different possibilities. and preparation expert testimony of load forecasts in utility rate cases. Weather Normalization Weather Normalization of Electric Load Data is done for two reasons. In such cases. forecast support and training and knowledge transfer for multi-scenario utility load forecasting and T&D planning. Generally. which led to practical guidelines for T&D forecasting including how many and what type of multi. Electric Revenue Forecasting This involves projecting revenues from electric sales expected in the future for an electric system. Best practice in multi-scenario forecasting is to handle the uncertainty in the planning by providing planning resource in the T&D expansion plan through effective multi-scenario planning. budget defense strategy. There is uncertainty as to the outcome of major events or load growth factors which cannot be resolved or “averaged” out of the forecast consideration. public. planners require a multi-scenario. and we do not offer these services directly. Second. Typically this is done on a probabilistic basis (for weather and perhaps other scenarios) by customer class and segment and includes analysis of utility load growth.experience in rate case capital justification. First. with theoretical work on when and if it is needed. Planning for such eventualities is better covered by Integrated Planning Forecast Methods (see above). public. so that they may be more accurately analyzed for trends due to customer and economic growth and changes in usage patterns. multi-scenario planning does not have to be done for consideration of factors such as energy efficiency.

and workshops in all aspects of electric load forecasting and planning.quanta-technology. Fellow IEEE Len Januzik PE Dr. Richard E. seminars. Julio Romero-Aguero H. and coordinating these with equipment loading standards designed to fit the expected peak durations and stress levels of the probabilistic weather patterns the utility can expect as defined by that normalization.2nd Edition. and regulatory and justification support for its use. application support for the use of weather normalization. once every ten years) are accommodated.esri.pdf Article/presentation on a practical study done by a utility: http://proceedings. Quanta Technology provides standard and customized training programs.com/sites/default/files/doc-files/What-Happens-Lack-Long- Range-T-D-Infrastructure-Planning. and as part of the Utility University courses offered at Distributech each year. Gerry Sheble PE. Training In Load Forecasting. Le Xu References and Resources Technical Papers Article by Quanta Technology Authors: What Happens With a Lack of Long Range T&D Infrastructure Planning? http://www. Lee Willis PE.but some reasonable extremes such as a 90% extreme (a power system designed to handle the electric demands of summer heat storms which will occur. Resources are available to learn at one’s own pace and are published in the books Spatial Electric Load Forecasting – 2nd Edition and Power Distribution Load Forecasting . Quanta Technology Experts in Load Forecasting Dr. Lee Willis and Business Essentials for Utility Engineers by Quanta’s Dr. on average.pdf Page 5 . Optimal weather normalization involves determining both weather normalization formulae and factors. Fellow IEEE Dr.com/library/userconf/egug2008/papers/wednesday/spatial_load_analysis. Quanta Technology provides best-practice weather normalization methodology and services in all these areas including the evaluation and clean-up of weather and load data. All Quanta Technology seminars. This includes our standard courses on load forecasting including [list of titles here] as well as customized programs and workshops tailored to fit specific needs. workshops and courses are available for on-site training at a utility. John Spare Dr. Many of our courses are offered throughout the year at convenient locations through EUCI and The University of Wisconsin [links to courses]. including expert testimony. both by Quanta’s H. Brown (all published by Taylor and Francis/CRC and available from the publisher or from Amazon. determination of weather normalization formulae and factors.com) and technical papers available from IEEE and our website’s technical resources section.

com/isbn/9780203910764 Page 6 .jsp?arnumber=1456830 Books Spatial Electric Load Forecasting – Second Edition.be/CIRED09/pdfs/CIRED2009_0565_Paper.Article from CIRED on techniques used in several studies: http://www.com/Spatial-Electric-Forecasting-Engineering- Willis/dp/0824708407/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1325167537&sr=1-1 To access the book on-line and/or download sections: http://www. by H.com/library/userconf/proc05/papers/pap1003.com/research/electric-load-forecasting- methods-tools-for-decision-making/ Article by PacifiCorp on forecasting for T&D Asset Management using GIS: http://proceedings.cired.ieee.pdf Article overview of load forecasting: http://www.crcnetbase.esri.pdf Classic article: 1983 IEEE Proceedings cover paper on spatial load forecasting in power engineering (Willis & Northcote-Green) http://ieeexplore.org/xpl/freeabs_all.mendeley.amazon. Lee Willis To purchase the book: http://www.