The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) has gone into production with its Market Redesign and Technology Upgrade (MRTU). The new markets bring increased grid and market efficiencies, reduce barriers to alternative resources of power such as demand response and green generators, and give the operators new tools for managing transmission bottlenecks and dispatching the least-cost power plants.

Core to the new markets is a suite of Siemens ( Spectrum Power energy market management systems, consisting of the Integrated Forward Market, Day-Ahead and Real-Time Market applications, the Scheduling Infrastructure and Business Rules system for submission of bids at the front-end, and the Market Quality System for energy accounting and manual corrections at the back-end.

The Siemens systems are the enabling technology that brings three major wholesale market design improvements to California:

  • A full network model that analyzes generation and transmission schedules submitted a day in advance to better manage or avoid real-time bottlenecks.

  • An integrated forward market that provides a one-stop shop for trading and analyzing the electricity transmission capacity and reserves needed to keep the grid in balance.

  • Locational, marginal pricing provided by a system that prices electricity based on the cost of generating and delivering it.

The energy market management systems are integrated with more than 20 other CAISO systems that perform various business and operational functions on Web-based services and a service-oriented architecture. The new market system cleared the market of more than 28,300 MW of peak load in the day-ahead market, which is a typical springtime day for CAISO.