This paper presents an algorithm for the identification of parameters for a stochastic hot water end-use process that drives a homogeneous population of thermostatically controlled electric water heaters (EWH). Usually, only metered interval consumption data (kWh) is collected and the hot water end-use process is unobservable to utility and aggregators. However, the availability of EWHs for demand response (DR) is closely coupled with the hot water end-use process. In this context, the hot water end-use process is modeled as a two-state Markov chain (Use / No use), which causes the thermostatic ON-OFF switching process to behave as a Markov renewal process (MRP). A set of first passage-time problems is developed to obtain the moments of the transition probability densities of the MRP. These problems are addressed by establishing a system of coupled partial differential equations characterizing the temperature evolution of the EWH population. A key quantity in the methodology for estimating the parameters is the total time an EWH is ON within a period of interest. It is referred to as the total busy time. Total busy time in this approach is a random variable for which analytical expressions of the moments are developed as a function of the metered window length. The latter expressions become the basis of a hot water demand model identification algorithm which is validated using agent-based simulations of EWHs.
Published December 2020 , 16 pages