# Load Factor Formula, Definition and Applications

Definition: Load factor is defined as the ratio of average load to the maximum demand during a given period of time.

Mathematical formula equation:

Alternative formula:

By multiplying numerator and denominator of above equation by T we obtain:

Load factor = (Average load * T)/(Max demand * T) … (2)

Categorization:

If time period T in above equation is considered a day then load factor is termed as daily load factor.

Its formula is:

𝐷𝑎𝑖𝑙𝑦 𝐿𝑜𝑎𝑑 𝐹𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑜𝑟= (𝑈𝑛𝑖𝑡𝑠 𝑔𝑒𝑛𝑒𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑖𝑛 𝑎 𝑑𝑎𝑦)/(𝑀𝑎𝑥𝑖𝑚𝑢𝑚 𝑑𝑒𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑑 ∗ 24 ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑟𝑠)

Also see: Demand Factor formula by ElectricalEngineering.XYZ

In this case time considered in 720 hours. (1 month = 30 days = 30 * 24 = 720 hours

𝐷𝑎𝑖𝑙𝑦 𝐿𝑜𝑎𝑑 𝐹𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑜𝑟= (𝑈𝑛𝑖𝑡𝑠 𝑔𝑒𝑛𝑒𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑖𝑛 𝑎 𝑑𝑎𝑦)/(𝑀𝑎𝑥𝑖𝑚𝑢𝑚 𝑑𝑒𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑑 ∗ 24 ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑟𝑠)

In this case time considered in 8760 hours.

1 year = 365 days = 365 * 24 = 8760 hours

𝑌𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑙𝑦 𝐿𝑜𝑎𝑑 𝐹𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑜𝑟= (𝑈𝑛𝑖𝑡𝑠 𝑔𝑒𝑛𝑒𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑖𝑛 𝑎 𝑦𝑒𝑎𝑟)/(𝑀𝑎𝑥𝑖𝑚𝑢𝑚 𝑑𝑒𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑑 ∗ 8760 ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑟𝑠)

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LF and Power Generation Cost

The load factor plays detrimental role in the overall cost of electricity per unit generated. Load factor and cost per unit generated as inversely linked. The higher the load factor of a power station, the lower will be the cost per unit generated. Since, a higher load factor implies lesser maximum demand. If maximum demand is lower, that means capacity of power plant is lower.

Also see: Power Generation MCQs

Good to Know:

The value of load factor is always less than 1. That is, because the average load always smaller than maximum demand.

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