Reference card - TIAM-UCL

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The reference card is a clearly defined description of model features. The numerous options have been organized into a limited amount of default and model specific (non default) options. In addition some features are described by a short clarifying text.


  • not implemented
  • implemented
  • implemented (not default option)


Name and version


Institution and users

University College London (UCL), UK,
main users: Energy modellers


TIAM-UCL documentation consists of a referencecard and detailed model documentation

Model scope and methods

Model documentation: Model scope and methods - TIAM-UCL


TIAM-UCL (TIMES Integrated Assessment Model) uses the TIMES modelling platform, which is a successor of the MARKAL platform. The markal/times modelling concept was originally intended to analyse energy systems at a regional or global level and has evolved to also describe greenhouse gas emissions. Scenario based simulations maximize the total discounted sum of consumer and supplier surplus over the model horizon, while taking into account the constraints (e.g. energy demand to be fulfilled, availability of energy resources etc).


Energy Systems partial equilibrium

Solution method

Linear optimisation


Perfect Foresight (Stochastic and myopic runs are also possible)

Temporal dimension

Base year:2005, time steps:5 years up to 2070 and 10 years beyond, horizon: 95 years (2005-2100)

Note: Year divided to six time slices + an additional peaking constraint.

Spatial dimension

Number of regions:16

  1. Africa
  2. Australia
  3. Canada
  4. Central and South America
  5. China
  6. Eastern Europe
  7. Former Soviet Union
  8. India
  9. Japan
  10. Mexico
  11. Middle East
  12. Other Developing Asia
  13. South Korea
  14. United Kingdom
  15. United States of Amercia
  16. Western Europe

Note: UK split as separate region compared to the ETSAP-TIAM model

Policy implementation

Policies can be implemented in a number of ways, depending on the type of policy. A number of general or specific policy choices can be modelled including: Emissions taxes, permit trading, specific technology subsidies, technology and/or resource constraints.

Socio economic drivers

Model documentation: Socio-economic drivers - TIAM-UCL

Exogenous drivers

  • Exogenous GDP
  • Total Factor Productivity
  • Labour Productivity
  • Capital Technical progress
  • Energy Technical progress
  • Materials Technical progress
  • GDP per capita
  • Population
  • GDP per household

Note: Sectoral trajectories for Agriculture, Services and Industrial outputs

Endogenous drivers

  • Learning by doing

Note: Is available but rarely used due to computational issues


  • GDP per capita
  • Income distribution in a region
  • Urbanisation rate
  • Education level
  • Labour participation rate

Macro economy

Model documentation: Macro-economy - TIAM-UCL

Economic sectors

  • Agriculture
  • Industry
  • Energy
  • Transport
  • Services

Note: Link with MACRO Stand-Alone (module which represents all other economic sectors) available to represent rest of the economy

Cost measures

  • GDP loss
  • Welfare loss
  • Consumption loss
  • Area under MAC
  • Energy system costs


  • Coal
  • Oil
  • Gas
  • Uranium
  • Electricity
  • Bioenergy crops
  • Food crops
  • Capital
  • Emissions permits
  • Non-energy goods
  • Diesel
  • LNG
  • Gasoline
  • Heavy fuel oil
  • Natural gas liquids
  • Naphtha


Model documentation: Energy - TIAM-UCL


Elastic demand mode available (includes exogenous elasticity of each energy demand with respect to their own price) Technology and region specific hurdle rates.

Resource use

  • Coal
  • Oil
  • Gas
  • Uranium
  • Biomass

Electricity technologies

  • Coal
  • Gas
  • Oil
  • Nuclear
  • Biomass
  • Wind
  • Solar PV
  • CCS
  • Geothermal
  • Hydropower
  • Solar CSP

Conversion technologies

  • CHP
  • Heat pumps
  • Hydrogen
  • Fuel to gas
  • Fuel to liquid

Note: A range of sequestration and storage technologies represented

Grid and infrastructure

  • Electricity
  • Gas
  • Heat
  • CO2
  • H2

Note: No explicit modelling of grids, only a transmission cost and division to centralised/decentralised electricity generation technologies

Energy technology substitution

  • Discrete technology choices
  • Expansion and decline constraints
  • System integration constraints

Energy service sectors

  • Transportation
  • Industry
  • Residential and commercial
  • Agriculture

Note: Residential and commercial are represented separately


Model documentation: Land-use - TIAM-UCL; Non-climate sustainability dimension - TIAM-UCL


Note: Land is not explicitly modelled.

Other resources

Model documentation: Non-climate sustainability dimension - TIAM-UCL

Other resources

  • Water
  • Metals
  • Cement

Note: Ongoing research on water and metals but not yet included in the model

Emissions and climate

Model documentation: Emissions - TIAM-UCL; Climate - TIAM-UCL

Green house gasses

  • CO2
  • CH4
  • N2O
  • HFCs
  • CFCs
  • SF6


  • NOx
  • SOx
  • BC
  • OC
  • Ozone

Climate indicators

  • CO2e concentration (ppm)
  • Climate damages $ or equivalent
  • Radiative Forcing (W/m2 )
  • Temperature change (°C)

Note: Climate damages available although not often modelled CO2 is from both energy and also land-use (and forestry) included in climate module. The non-CO2 forcing agents that are not explicitly tracked are represented in the climate module by an exogenously given additional forcing factor.