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Energy Industry Plugs into What'sBest!

The energy market has become increasingly complex in recent years, and energy companies need good software tools in order to keep abreast of this dynamic field. Two companies that supply turn key optimization tools to this industry are Power Ink of the UK and global-roam of Australia.

Power Ink, which provides consulting and training to businesses in the power markets, has developed sophisticated simulation models of Europe's electricity markets. Written in Excel and utilizing What's Best!'s optimization capabilities, these models forecast market prices, trade flows, and generation patterns in 27 individual European countries and on a Europe-wide basis. Using the optimizer, the models examine the market dynamics of this highly complex interconnected system and provide insights into its counter-intuitive nature.

Their models have proven to be an invaluable tool for energy traders, bankers and generators, allowing them to explore market scenarios out to the year 2015. Power station developers and bankers use the models to screen projects in different countries and regions by investigating the value of an additional megawatt of power coming on line. Existing generators can examine the impact of different bidding strategies on their market share and revenue. For more information on Power Ink, vist their website at

Australian based global-roam also supplies a forecasting tool for the energy market. Their primary product, 2-4-C , can be applied to scheduling, dispatch, and transmission of any interconnected competitive electricity supply system from generator to load point. The objective is to minimize the cost of providing electricity to the aggregated system load given price bids by every generator.The constraints include minimum and maximum capacity for generation units, maximum transmission line flows, spinning reserve levels, and the overall supply demand balance.

Energy Industry Plugs into What'sBest!

With the present model, 2-4-C can easily optimize the scheduling and dispatch of around 250 million megawatts of energy per year to 15 million people -- a $7.5 billion per year problem, which can include hundreds of generators, distributors, and retailers. 2-4-C has also been used to model supply to 400 million people in Northern China.

Given the sheer size of the problem, global-roam decided to use linear programming as the optimization technique. Global-roam staff have 20 years experience with linear programming for power system optimization including real time dispatch. "Global-roam chose LINDO for the LP engine after a great deal of research into many other commercially available packages," stated Ben Vanderwaal, Senior Software Engineer for global-roam, "[LINDO] was selected for its particular attention to run-time licence agreements, and its capability for easy upgrading to support larger models. LINDO Systems also gave the most feedback from sales staff during the search for the best LP engine, as well as provided a comprehensive website and excellent demonstration version." For further information on the 2-4-C package and contact details, please visit their website at

For more information on What'sBest!, please see the product pages. You can also download a demo version from our download page or order a full blown version directly from our order page.