A Mathematical Programming Solution for Automatic Generation of Synthetic Power Flow Cases

Eran Schweitzer, Anna Scaglione

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


A shortage of large power system data sets, as well as the frequent restrictions on sharing such models, have led to newfound interest in creating synthetic data that can be easily shared among researchers. This paper considers the problem of forming a power system test case from the constituent parts of realistic power grid samples. Starting from a topology, and samples of generation, load, and branches, we assemble systems while respecting the constraints imposed by a typical Optimal Power Flow problem. Expressed in this manner, the problem involves solving for permutations of the input data. Since permutations matrices are binary, the problem is linearized, allowing for a Mixed Integer Linear Problem formulation. The problem is further decomposed using the Alternating Direction Method of Multipliers as well as an Evolutionary Algorithm to facilitate scaling to larger system sizes. A post processing step is used to add shunt elements for reactive power planning. The resulting systems demonstrate statistically similar power flow behavior to reference systems. Finally, new analysis avenues, opened by synthesizing test cases according to the proposed method, are briefly introduced by creating fictitious systems with different topology models and examining how these affect power flow behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8425770
Pages (from-to)729-741
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Power Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • Assignment problem
  • linearized power flow
  • mixed integer linear problem MILP
  • synthetic test cases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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