A hierarchical optimal control strategy for continuous demand response of building HVAC systems to provide frequency regulation service to smart power grids

Huilong Wang, Shengwei Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Ensuring the power balance and reliability of power grids is an increasing challenge due to the increasing involvement of intermittent renewable power generations. The use of existing heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems in buildings has attracted increasing attention to implement continuous demand response in providing frequency regulation service, which can enhance instantaneous power balance and reliability of power grids without extra huge investment. However, the energy flexibility of buildings is not consistent, and the capacity available for frequency regulation service changes over time due to the changes of working conditions. In this study, a hierarchical optimal control strategy, consisting of a regulation bidding controller and a power use following controller, is proposed. It optimizes the power use baseline and regulation capacity, and controls HVAC systems to provide qualified frequency regulation service, considering the tradeoff between financial reward (regulation capacity) and thermal comfort while satisfying the operating constraints of HVAC systems. The proposed control strategy is validated on a simulation test platform. Results show that the strategy can maximize the use of regulation capacity provided by HVAC systems while ensuring the indoor environment control quality under a given guarantee rate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number120741
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2021


  • Building demand response
  • Grid-responsive building
  • HVAC systems
  • Optimal control
  • Smart grid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Pollution
  • Energy(all)
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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