The International Energy Outlook published by the EIA has forecast a world energy consumption of 629 quadrillion Btu in 2020, with a 69% net increase in the generation of electricity by the year 2040. The challenge of balancing supply and demand of electricity in real time has demanded that power and utility companies continuously increase capacity and output, putting considerable emphasis on state-of-the-art electrical systems network design and upgrading the aging and failure-prone power grid infrastructure.
Power and utility engineering services have become an increasingly valuable resource to assist the manufacturing, industrial, commercial, and the electrical power utility sectors in implementing the 3R’s of power generation and distribution engineering – resiliency, reliability, and redundancy.
Total replacement or upgrades to antiquated electrical systems must be engineered from concept to installation with these three principles to eliminate costly or hazardous vulnerabilities for the power supplier or end-user. Reducing brownouts, blackouts, equipment failures, low power factors, voltage surges, and frequency variations are only a few benefits to 3R power distribution engineering.
Your outsourced engineering services firm should not only hold fast to the 3R’s tenet of quality power systems design and engineering but should also embrace your infrastructure project with the same passion, commitment, and determination as any other project stakeholder. Our engineering services are committed to excellence in engineering and design of power systems that effectively accomplish the following:
- Reducing errors and enhancing design productivity with computer-aided engineering, 3D structural modeling, and data-intelligent documentation
- Knowledge of new equipment and products to replace decades-old technology
- Boost voltages while reducing transmission costs in power distribution
- Supplying the demands of heavy power users or congested geographical areas
- Improving power quality for a digital world and the modern power consumer
- Fast restoration of power to customers during weather-related events
- Critical communications plans to protect public safety during unstable and volatile global events
- Efficient and sustainable energy production and usage to reduce the global carbon footprint
- Solid-state automation of power facility supply and end-user demand to regulate peak demand cycles
Our skilled design engineers, drafters, and technicians have years of experience with various power utility generation projects to handle the largest of projects in a timely and proficient manner. The following 5 examples demonstrate the type of engineering layout, 3D modeling techniques, and drafting production workflows we can accomplish for your next project:
- Conceptual layout and design of utility substations as per RCCM and ASME – ISO-9001 compliant knowledge and adherence to RCC-M and ASME international standards for the design and construction of mechanical equipment for nuclear reactors and electrical power substations. These standards provide the basis of justification for design assumptions and design calculations and are proven to significantly reduce the potential risks of failure, and improve the utility’s safety and stability.
Effectively communicating with your project management team, our designers will quickly convert conceptual sketches into 2D or 3D facility layouts for early project review and approval phases. This early stage conceptual involvement can directly provide a viable power model for subsequent detailed engineering documentation and mechanical equipment specifications.
- Facility rendering and visualization for client presentation
- GIS base maps for transmission line routing
- civil grading plans and site plot plans for land development
- preliminary power distribution network and load conceptualization
- Computer-aided engineering (CAE) and BIM modeling – Resiliency in power distribution networks are obtained when design features, such as circuit breakers, protective relaying and fuses effectively and immediately mitigate an electrical failure to alternate circuits or emergency power sources. These and additional factors such as adequate insulation and inherent mechanical strength to withstand stresses and heating can all be simulated through a building information model (BIM). A 3D structural model will improve facility performance and ensure quality construction and systems installation documentation:
- Structural steel design models and stress calculations
- Plant and facilities architectural design and layout
- Single line diagrams of distribution network and protective relaying
- Bus arrangement and routing
- Short-circuit and continuous circuit capacities documentation
- Electrical clearances and spacing for building codes and installation
- Electric distribution substation and switchgear facilities layout becomes the critical heart of any power distribution network and will entail the majority of manpower design and drafting efforts from multiple disciplines; civil, structural, mechanical, process, and electrical. From initial schematic representation (single-line and three-line diagrams) of the power distribution network nodes through complete project documentation package submittals, our focus on accuracy and fast turn-around of engineering changes will keep your project on schedule and under-budget.
We can supply the multi-discipline engineering manpower, state-of-the-art IT hardware, and computer-aided design software platforms to complete your project, such as AutoCAD, Revit, Tekla Steel, and others:
- Concrete foundation plan and anchor bolt details
- Equipment elevations, sections, and details for reactors, transformers, and other switchyard substation equipment
- Modular switchgear bus and equipment plans and sections
- Power, controls and communications conduit and cable routing
- Transformer oil containment drawings
Facility upgrades and retrofits often require legacy data conversion from defunct file formats or 2D to 3D conversion services. We have extensive experience in clean, quality data conversion, re-drafting of older documents to fit new industry standards and codes, or the scanning and archiving of historical facility documentation.
- Electrical Controls and Control Room Layout – the utility infrastructure includes the intelligence to automatically transfer power to a healthy redundant system in the case of evident failure. It is the brains of the electrical controls, communications systems, and control room personnel to constantly scan, supervise, meter, and adjust for power quality and fluctuations. In the event of failure, secondary systems are engineered to provide reliable power to customers while maintenance and servicing are implemented.
Expect your engineering services provider to document all requirements for systems connections from the plant to the control room to the substation distribution equipment, such as:
- Raised floor control room and data center layouts
- SCADA monitoring and control systems
- Shop drawings for metal or wood workstations
- Process and instrumentation diagrams
- fiber optics and ethernet communications documentation
- Electrical control cabinets and instrumentation marshaling cabinets
- Stair and rail drawings per code
Inquire into post-production engineering substation and switchgear commissioning services, which would include the critical testing of current and voltage circuits along with the protective relaying sensing inputs for correct systems coordination and selectivity. Any in-field changes to documentation can be efficiently handled with additional as-built engineering change drafting services.
- Manufacturing and mechanical drawing generation may entail third-party vendor submittals of equipment which must then be drafted into the engineering design layouts and section elevations for appropriate structural clearances and trade inter-connections. Our service will free your staff from this production task with skilled mechanical drafters capable of also producing any necessary shop drawings for final fabrication or installation.
We can provide 3D mechanical drawings or 2D layouts and elevations for the following substation equipment:
- Transformers, switches, and switchgear
- Arrestors, breakers, and reclosers
- Current and potential transformers
- Coupling capacitors and line traps
- Bus support and suspension insulators
Additional facilities documentation for mechanical rooms, HVAC, electrical and lighting trades, plumbing and fire safety installations often require shop drawings for ductwork, piping, cable tray, and steel structural support components. Outsourcing the fabrication, assembly, and installation drawings for third-party equipment is a cost-effective way to reduce in-house engineering overhead.
Having the option of either 3D intelligent modeling or 2D orthographic view layout and design workflows from your engineering and design service will allows a budget-conscious decision for your next project.