Flexibility in 21st Century Power Systems


National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Jaquelin Cochran
Mackay Miller
Owen Zinaman
Mcihael Milligan
Doug Arent
Bryan Palmintier
Mark O'Malley
Simon Mueller
Eamonn Lannoye
Aidan Tuohy
Ben Kujala
Morten Sommer
Hannele Holttinen
Juha Kiviluoma
S.K. Soonee
1 May 2014

This paper summarizes emerging analytic frameworks to measure and communicate operational flexibility at various levels of complexity, and the authors address some key concerns and misperceptions of the term. The paper describes a suite of options for decision-makers and regulators—physical, operational and institutional—that can increase flexibility, and their relative costs. The paper concludes by laying out a few key principles for policymakers when considering power system flexibility.