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This paper presents genetic algorithm method for unit commitment of thermal power plant. The optimum allocation of generations (for a given plant load) to different units of a plant is called unit commitment (UC). It can be easily shown that the optimal operation of the units at a thermal power station can be achieved when the incremental fuel cost (incremental cost) of all the units are equal. A new fitness function is defined in this paper, which combines (i) equal incremental cost (IC) criteria, and (ii) generation and load balance constraint. Generation of each unit is taken as variable. The minimum and maximum generation limits of the units are incorporated with the help of lower and upper bounds of variable. The genetic algorithm (GA) optimization method is employed to estimate the optimum allocation of generations to different units of plant, making use of the fitness function. Computer programs (using MATLAB) have been developed for optimum UC, using GA technique.