Market Garden

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The Market Garden: a simulation tool for market mechanisms


CWI is developing software that demonstrates different market mechanisms. This enables partners to gain experience with different scenarios, different business models and roles, different levels of ease of bidding and to incentivise different prosumer behaviour, all of which depend on the market mechanisms of the energy system in which they operate. Stylised models are used, that are less detailed but better suited for studying general characteristics. Furthermore, the models are set up in a modular fashion, which will enable users to couple and interchange different market mechanisms, creating various architectures for smart energy systems.

The Market Garden will offer users access to various market mechanisms that handle energy supply and demand. The software will be able to deal with an arbitrary number of generators and loads who submit bids according to the specifications of the chosen market. Each market has a clearing mechanism that finds a price for each market participant (either uniform or discriminatory), whereafter commitments, costs, profits etc. are calculated for the generators and loads.

Open questions regarding the implementation

We make a distinction between market mechanisms with and without central optimisation. These mechanisms can be further distinguished by the use of different auction types for multiunit auctions: for example, sealed-bid or open auctions with uniform or non-uniform pricing. Unlimited variations of auctions exist, but initially we would like to limit the amount of options. Please let us know if you have specific mechanisms in mind that would be interesting to investigate? Or is there perhaps a certain characteristic that you would like to have be variable (such as uniform vs. non-uniform pricing)? Any suggestions are welcome.


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I/O Specifications

Settings defining the configuration of Market Garden can be set according to this scheme (File:Settings.xsd)

The scenarios in which the market mechanisms operate can be specified using a xml-file. The scheme can be found here (File:Scenario.xsd).

Bid functions can be specified per agent in a separate xml-file. The format depends on the market mechanism the agent is participating on. The scheme for agents participating on a clearing price market is defined here (File:ClearingpriceAgent.xsd).

The market results are communicated back in xml files defined by this scheme (File:MarketResult.xsd).

Remote Access

The XML schema definitions define the interface for virtual connection of remote users. Market Garden can be run as a pricing service by submitting the XML files to our server. The interface to connect to Market Garden can be found at

The following example shows the usage of the remote interface:

 curl -F settings=@example.xml -F scenario[]=@scenario.xml -F agent[]=@coal.xml 
 -F agent[]=@cityagent.xml
 curl -o results.xml


For demonstration purposes, a user interface has been built around the framework. With this application we can demonstrate the functionality, and explore different scenarios and settings. The main features can be found in this presentation (File:MarketGardenPresentation.pdf).

A simulation is currently running in real time. We hope that this test-environment will be deployed further, and that other partners will join the effort. The results can be found [here]

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