Direct versus Facility Centric Load Control for Automated Demand Response

Publication Type

Conference Paper



Direct load control (DLC) refers to the scenario where third party entities outside the home or facility are responsible for deciding how and when specific customer loads will be controlled in response to Demand Response (DR) events on the electric grid. Examples of third parties responsible for performing DLC may be Utilities, Independent System Operators (ISO), Aggregators, or third party control companies. DLC can be contrasted with facility centric load control (FCLC) where the decisions for how loads are controlled are made entirely within the facility or enterprise control systems. In FCLC the facility owner has more freedom of choice in how to respond to DR events on the grid. Both approaches are in use today in automation of DR and both will continue to be used in future market segments including industrial, commercial and residential facilities. This paper will present a framework which can be used to differentiate between DLC and FCLC based upon where decisions are made on how specific loads are controlled in response to DR events. This differentiation is then used to compare and contrast the differences between DLC and FCLC to identify the impact each has on:

  • Utility/ISO and third party systems for managing demand response
  • Facility systems for implementing load control
  • Communications networks for interacting with the facility
  • Facility operators and managers

Finally a survey of some of the existing DR related specifications and communications standards is given and their applicability to DLC or FCLC.


Grid-Interop Forum 2009

Year of Publication



sub - Oct. 19, accepted - Oct. 31; published in proceedings


Research Areas

Related Files