A Novel Closed-Loop Clustering Method for Hierarchical Load Forecasting

Chi Zhang, Ran Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (SciVal)
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Hierarchical load forecasting (HLF) is an approach to generate forecasts for hierarchical loadtime series. The performance of HLF can be improved by optimizing the forecasting model and the hierarchical structure. Previous studies mostly focus on the forecasting model while the hierarchical structure is usually formed by clustering of natural attributes like geography, customer type, or the similarities between load profiles. A major limitation of these natural hierarchical structures is the mismatched objectives between clustering and forecasting. Clustering aims to minimize the dissimilarity among customers of a group while forecasting aims to minimize their forecasting errors.The two independent optimizations could limit the overall forecasting performance. Hence, this paper attempts to integrate the hierarchical structure and the forecasting model by a novel closed-loopclustering (CLC) algorithm. It links the objectives of forecasting and clustering by a feedback mechanism to return the goodness-of-fit as the criterion for the clustering. In this way, the hierarchical structure is enhanced by re-assigning the cluster membership and the parameters of the forecasting models are updated iteratively. The method is comparatively assessed with existing HLF methods. Using the same forecasting model, the proposed hierarchical structure outperforms the bottom-up structure by 52.20%, ensemble-based structure by 26.89%, load-profile structures by 19.90%, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Article number9162141
Pages (from-to)432-441
JournalIEEE Transactions on Smart Grid
Issue number1
Early online date7 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2021


  • Load forecasting
  • hierarchical forecasting
  • smart meter
  • big data


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