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Start Me Up: Modeling of Power Plant Start-Up Conditions and their Impact on Prices


  • Abrell, Jan
  • Kunz, Friedrich
  • Weigt, Hannes


In this paper we compare different approaches to account for start-up costs when modeling electricity markets. We restrict the model formulation to either linear or mixed integer problems in order to guarantee a robust solution. The results indicate that the choice of the model has a significant impact on the resulting market prices and company profit. The models either calculate higher peak prices or prices below marginal costs in off-peak periods but not both. Furthermore, the models perform differently when we apply a large sample, the number of equations having an important impact. We conclude that different model formulations respond particularly to specific modeling questions.

Suggested Citation

  • Abrell, Jan & Kunz, Friedrich & Weigt, Hannes, 2008. "Start Me Up: Modeling of Power Plant Start-Up Conditions and their Impact on Prices," MPRA Paper 65661, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:65661

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gerard Doorman & Bjørn Nygreen, 2003. "Market Price Calculations in Restructured Electricity Markets," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 124(1), pages 49-67, November.
    2. repec:spr:compst:v:66:y:2007:i:1:p:21-32 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ludwig Kuntz & Felix Müsgens, 2007. "Modelling start-up costs of multiple technologies in electricity markets," Mathematical Methods of Operations Research, Springer;Gesellschaft für Operations Research (GOR);Nederlands Genootschap voor Besliskunde (NGB), vol. 66(1), pages 21-32, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Weigt, H. & Willems, Bert, 2011. "The Effect of Divestitures in the German Electricity Market," Discussion Paper 2011-034, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    2. Ellerman, Danny & Delarue, Erik & Weigt, Hannes, 2012. "CO2 Abatement from RES Injections in the German Electricity Sector: Does a CO2 Price Help?," Working papers 2012/14, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    3. Karl-Kiên Cao & Kai von Krbek & Manuel Wetzel & Felix Cebulla & Sebastian Schreck, 2019. "Classification and Evaluation of Concepts for Improving the Performance of Applied Energy System Optimization Models," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(24), pages 1-51, December.
    4. Cebulla, F. & Fichter, T., 2017. "Merit order or unit-commitment: How does thermal power plant modeling affect storage demand in energy system models?," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 117-132.
    5. Abrell, Jan & Rausch, Sebastian, 2016. "Cross-country electricity trade, renewable energy and European transmission infrastructure policy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 87-113.

    More about this item


    electricity; unit commitment; start-up costs; linear programming; mixed integer programming;

    JEL classification:

    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • L94 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Electric Utilities


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