Sept. 9, 2003 — As one of the country’s leading research groups in the field of Complex Adaptive Systems Simulation (CASS), researchers at Argonne National Laboratory are building simulations of complex systems from the bottom up to create a closer match with the real world.
The CASS programming approach allows researchers to examine the emerging behavior and interactions of individual agents within a larger system, which is a change in perspective from traditional modeling approaches designed to solve equations based on long-run average behavior.
Argonne’s Electricity Market Complex Adaptive System (EMCAS) software is a power market analysis tool. Although traditional optimization and simulation tools provide useful insights into electricity system operations, they are limited in their ability to reflect the diversity of agents participating in electricity markets, each with unique business strategies, risk preferences, and decision processes.
Agent-based modeling techniques in EMCAS make it possible to represent power markets with multiple agents, each with their own objectives and decision rules. EMCAS agents also learn from their previous experiences and change their behavior when future opportunities arise.
In August 2003, Argonne authorized Adica Consulting to serve as the exclusive distributor of the EMCAS software. ADICA and Argonne are in discussions with utilities and regulatory bodies from North America, Europe, Southeast Asia, and Australia concerning potential EMCAS applications.
During a visit to Argonne, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science Director Ray Orbach described Argonne’s CASS program to President George W. Bush and House Speaker Dennis Hastert.
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