Stochastic Market Auction Redesigned Trading System (SMARTS)

Default ARPA-E Project Image

Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
Project Term:
10/01/2020 - 09/30/2023

Critical Need:

The grid relies on conventional bulk power plants to provide the flexibility to operate power systems reliably. These assets can guarantee available capacity except in rare events. The existing risk management strategy protects against those rare events and aligns well with conventional technologies. New risk management strategies are needed due to the shift in grid resources: intermittent renewable resources, distributed energy resources, and storage technologies. Management systems must be able to leverage all capabilities of these new technologies to maintain an economical and reliable grid. PERFORM projects aim to address that need by developing methods to quantify and manage risk at the asset and system levels for the grid.

Project Innovation + Advantages:

The Energy Trading Analytics team will redesign a novel, state-of-the-art stochastic market tool to restructure wholesale real-time energy and reserve markets for improved information aggregation, reliability and security, and consumer choice. The design will be coupled with intelligent energy-portfolio risk management tools that enable consumers to prioritize flexible demand assets (e.g., air conditioners, water heaters, energy storage) to offer flexibility into markets as reliable resources. This project will evaluate the risk and performance of the proposed market trading system and conduct simulation and pre-pilot tests to demonstrate the approach in the PJM Interconnection, the world’s largest wholesale electricity market. The redesigned market trading system will advance price-responsive risk management, foster robust decentralized decision making for real-time operations and operational planning under uncertainty, and attract innovation and investment opportunities. The proposed approach will result in the evolution toward an innovative market trading platform supported by intelligent energy-portfolio risk management tools, leveraging emerging distributed resources, storage, and smart grid technologies for meeting the needs of tomorrow’s grid.

Potential Impact:

PERFORM projects will design methods and risk scores to clearly communicate the physical delivery risk of an energy asset’s offer and design grid management systems that organically capture uncertainty. These management systems will evaluate and hedge the system risk position to meet or exceed a baseline system risk index. This pursuit will achieve the following area impacts:


Optimal utilization of renewable and clean resources for all grid services improves grid reliability, reduces energy imports, and provides a sustainable path to energy independence.


When low- or zero-emission assets provide all grid products and services, grid operations are no longer reliant on legacy, carbon-heavy centralized generation assets, which enables the grid to absorb more clean resources.


Innovation in grid management will reduce consumer costs, increase the value of emerging technologies, and help achieve a clean and sustainable electric power sector. Merging risk techniques in power systems with those from finance and actuarial science enables further economic growth and redefines the role of electric power sector entities.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Jonathan Glass
Project Contact:
Dr. Hung-po Chao
Press and General Inquiries Email:
Project Contact Email:


Zome Energy Networks
Pennsylvania State University

Related Projects

Release Date: