Utilities in the Western Interconnection have traditionally allocated contract path rights for the use of the transmission systems that they own. These rights are defined based on the total transfer capability and ownership shares of specific facilities.
By way of contrast, the actual flow of electricity on the transmission system is dictated by the physical characteristics of the transmission system, not the contract. This can lead to a mismatch between the actual flows and the assumed flows.
The benefits of implementing flow-based scheduling and its related processes may generally include more accurate utilization of transmission facilities, a truer signal of congestion on specific lines, and greater availability and utilization of the grid.
After investigating tools available to implement flow-based scheduling, the Work Group is assessing the costs and benefits of a potential experiment offering certain flow-based Available Transmission Capability (ATC) transmission services on a number of paths in the WestConnect footprint.
The current vision of the criteria for a path to be part of the proposed experiment:
- The path is schedule limited, but not reliability limited.
- Flows are below the schedule limit.
- More ATC on path would be readily marketable.
Work Group Chairman