RBI developed SAMBA© (Scheduling and Metering Billing Application) to facilitate the operations of utilities. It is an internet-based platform utilizing a Standard Query Language database application for scheduling power, tracking loads, preparing power bills, and reconciling costs.
This program allows customers to input process parameters, such as production expectations for water pumping, to better accommodate vagaries in operations that may or may not be predictable through autoregressive and weather-related parameters. Autoregressive load forecasts provide a backdrop for customer inputs. The program pools loads and resources to optimize hydropower, physical assets, and market-based resources to produce hourly schedules of loads and resources that get submitted to the control area operator. SAMBA organizes all aspects of data from metering and power transactions and enables standard and custom reports from the data to produce timely billing and forensic analysis of operations.
SAMBA evolved over a decade from a dozen modules and a moderately sized database into a massive mission-critical system as the central repository for all data such as Settlement Quality Meter Data (SQMD), CAISO settlements data, and hourly detail of budget and reconciliation data. RBI now maintains over 70 modules spanning 207 database tables and over 380 million rows of data – all used by District users and utility consultants. We maintain data integrity through automated validations and continually enhance the system as requested by the utilities. Building on the success of SAMBA, RBI developed SAMBAdp which is a displacement program that allows utilities with resources spanning different control areas to pool and exchange resources; thereby avoiding control area assessments for importing or exporting energy or from arbitrage costs applied to nodal energy paths. The program saved each customer group over $5 million dollars in 5 years of operation. This on-going daily operation allows approximately 9 participants representing 70 entities to pool and exchange resources saving millions of dollars annually.