An Independent Systems Operator had a labor-intensive manual system for maintaining their capacity market. The market handled approximately $1 billion annually in transactions and required transmitting information via email, maintaining data in a series of spreadsheets and manually transferring data between spreadsheets and existing applications. The process did not provide for a robust audit trail and was prone to human error.
LTI developed an automated, secure web-enabled system that improves staff productivity, reduces the potential for error and increases customer satisfaction.
A J2EE implementation was chosen that utilizes an n-tier design to ensure scalability, reduce dependence upon a single technology provider and leverage the use of open source tools and libraries. Tiers for the presentation, business logic and data abstraction were implemented following industry standard design patterns. Apache Struts was utilized in order to provide a reusable framework for the presentation layer and reduce development costs. The middle tier encapsulated the business logic and solved the market auctions using the Apache math library linear program solver.
The solution also took advantage of Enterprise JavaBeans for data manipulation and messaging and substantial reliance on the Spring framework. The system was implemented using Oracle 11 as the database and the JBoss application server. Authentication and authorization was handled through JAAS, using LDAP and directory servers for storing user profiles. Prototyping and evaluation of competing technologies were provided as input into the decision-making and selection process, which minimized risks during implementation. Initial development was completed in LTI's secure remote development center. An agile development process continues to be used as the system is maintained and upgraded to handle evolving market conditions.
The client has a secure, maintainable and scalable system for maintaining the market for installed capacity. The system reduces staff workload, provides transparency to the market participants and maintains the integrity of the market processes and data through implemented business rules and workflows, resulting in the ability to comply with strict audit requirements.