Substation Design Services

substation design services

Power Grid Solutions provides a wide range of power system and substation design services. We have successfully delivered Brownfield and Greenfield Substation Designs across Australia, South East Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

From on-site data collection, feasibility studies, to detailed design, we have a proven track record in transmission and power line design. Our engineering team are qualified and experienced in Brownfield Substation Upgrades (up to 275kV) and Greenfield Substation Design (up to 220kV). We also perform independent peer-review and verification of Secondary & Primary Systems of 11/33/66/110/132/220kV AIS & GIS Substations.

All engineering work undertaken by Power Grid Solutions Pty Ltd in Queensland is performed by an RPEQ registered Electrical Engineer, or under the direct supervision of an RPEQ.

We are experienced in heavy industry and electrical infrastructure projects that rely on technical solutions with high performance and reliability.



A substation design refers to the planning and arrangement of equipment and infrastructure necessary for the functioning of an electrical substation. An electrical substation is a crucial part of the power distribution system that receives high-voltage electricity from power plants and transforms it into lower voltage levels for safe distribution to homes, businesses, and other facilities.

Substation engineering design is essential for several reasons. Let’s dig down further to understand its importance for the community.

Imagine a growing neighborhood with increasing energy demands due to new residential and commercial developments. The existing electrical infrastructure struggles to meet the rising power requirements, leading to frequent power outages and voltage fluctuations. To address this issue, the community decides to upgrade their power distribution system by constructing a new substation.

In this scenario, substation design plays a vital role. The substation design process involves determining the optimal location for the substation, considering factors such as accessibility, available land, and proximity to power sources. Additionally, the design considers the required equipment, such as transformers, circuit breakers, and control systems, to ensure efficient and reliable power distribution.

By carefully planning the substation primary design, the community can benefit in several ways. The new substation will increase the capacity of the power grid, enabling it to handle the growing energy demands of the neighborhood. This leads to a more stable and reliable electricity supply, reducing the frequency of power outages and improving the overall quality of life for residents and businesses.

A well-designed substation ensures the safety of the community. Proper insulation, grounding systems, and protective devices are incorporated into the design to minimize the risk of electrical accidents, such as fires or electric shocks. The substation design also considers environmental factors, aiming to minimize noise levels and visual impact on the surrounding area.

What is the life cycle of a substation? This involves several stages, which can vary depending on the project and its requirements.

Furthermore, what makes up a substation and why are substations important? These are the questions we are curious about when we’ve seen the big power grids in full operation.

Here are the common phases involved in the substation process:

  • Planning and Feasibility: This initial stage involves conducting a thorough analysis of the electrical system’s requirements and identifying the need for a new substation. Factors such as load demand, voltage levels, site selection, environmental impact, and regulatory compliance are assessed to determine the feasibility of the project.
  • Conceptual and Detailed Design: The conceptual design phase begins with development of a preliminary layout of the substation, which considers factors such as equipment arrangement, space requirements and system configuration. Once the conceptual design is further developed, it then leads to a detailed design plan made by the substation designer whilst engineers create technical drawings, specifications, and documentation that provide precise instructions for construction and equipment installation. Detailed electrical substation design, structural designs, and protection schemes are developed during this stage.
  • Procurement and Construction: After the detailed design is finalized, the procurement process begins. Substation protection and control design is then implemented for the equipment, materials, and services required for the substation construction, which are procured based on the design specifications. Once the procurement is complete, the construction phase starts, involving site preparation, foundation construction, equipment installation, wiring, and testing.
  • Testing and Commissioning: After the physical construction is completed, thorough testing and commissioning of the substation are carried out. This involves conducting functional tests, performance evaluations, and safety checks to ensure that the substation operates as intended and meets all applicable standards and regulations.
  • Operation and Maintenance: Once the substation is commissioned and operational, it enters the operation and maintenance phase. Ongoing monitoring, maintenance, and periodic inspections are performed to ensure the substation’s reliability, efficiency, and safety. Regular maintenance activities include equipment inspections, repairs, replacement of worn-out components, and upgrades to meet evolving requirements.
  • Upgrades: Over time, as technology advances or operational needs change, a substation may reach the end of its useful life or require upgrades. In such cases, decommissioning may be necessary, involving the removal of equipment and infrastructure in a safe and environmentally responsible manner. Upgrades can involve replacing or adding new equipment, expanding the substation’s capacity, or incorporating advanced technologies for improved performance.



There are a variety of substation designs available to the market. There is compact substation design, electrical substation, HVAC design, substation civil design, and many more.

If you’re a substation design company, there are three that are popular besides the standard designs that we are often familiar with.

Solar substation design: Refers to the specific planning and arrangement of equipment and infrastructure for a substation dedicated to connecting solar power generation systems to the electrical grid. The purpose of a solar substation design is to efficiently integrate the generated solar power into the existing grid infrastructure. It involves selecting appropriate transformers, inverters, switchgear, and other components necessary for the conversion, control, and distribution of solar power. The design also considers factors like voltage levels, power factor correction, protection systems, and communication interfaces to ensure the safe and reliable operation of the solar power plant substation design. It can also be very beneficial for farmers, helping them to massively reduce their power costs – a great investment if you’re in the agricultural business.

Substation steel structure design: The planning and design of steel structures used in the construction of a substation. Steel structures provide support, stability, and protection to various substation equipment and components. The purpose of steel structure design is to ensure the structural integrity, safety, and longevity of the substation. It includes determining the type and size of steel members, such as beams, columns, and trusses, based on the loads they need to bear, such as the weight of equipment, wind forces, and seismic considerations. The design accounts for factors like corrosion protection, maintenance access, and adherence to structural codes and standards.

Earthing design for substation: Involves creating an effective earthing or grounding system to ensure electrical safety and operational reliability. The purpose of substation earthing design is to establish a low-resistance path for fault currents, which helps protect personnel, equipment, and the overall electrical system. The design includes the layout and installation of grounding electrodes, conductors, and connections to create a robust grounding network. Proper earthing design helps dissipate fault currents, limits the potential for electric shock, prevents equipment damage from transient surges, and ensures accurate operation of protection devices.


Brownfield Substation Upgrades

  • Substation Upgrades up to 275kV
  • Circuit Breaker Upgrades (Live Tank & Dead Tank)
  • Relay Upgrades
  • Relay Programming
  • Relay Testing
  • Retrofitting Air Insulated Switchgear
  • Drafting Services
  • Connectivity of Transformer and Assets

Greenfield Substation Design Services

  • Concept Design & Major Equipment Selection
  • Primary & Secondary Systems Detail Design including IEC61850
  • Earthing Design, Soil Resistivity & Testing
  • Insulation Coordination Study
  • Lightning Protection Study
  • Transformer, CB, CT, VT,CVT Testing, Relay Configuration & Testing.

Substation Design Services

All engineering work undertaken by Power Grid Solutions Pty Ltd in Queensland is performed by an RPEQ registered Electrical Engineer, or under the direct supervision of an RPEQ.

If a client requires certification of third party engineering design, it is consistent with the Act for that project certification to be provided by a registered professional engineer. We can be engaged to undertake this type of certification.

The registered professional engineer who signs the certificate takes responsibility for the engineering design in terms of compliance with the Act. The engineer must satisfy him/herself that all drawings, calculations, data, assumptions and methods utilised in the design have been properly documented and are accurate, and the client must be able to provide this level of documentation for the certification to be issued.

HV/MV/LV Substation Design

Our Brownfield and Greenfield Substation design services include the following.

HV/MV Systems:

  • Concept Design of Secondary and Primary Systems: Equipment Selection & BOMs
  • Detail Design of Secondary Systems
  • Protection Relay Programming: FAT, SAT, routine maintenance
  • Detail Design of Primary Systems: SLD,GAS, Elevation, Cable Conduits and Pits
  • Detail Design of Earthing Systems including soil resistivity measurements and testing
  • MV/HV Cable Sizing
  • Power Factory Correction (PFC) Bank & Harmonic Filter Bank Sizing & Detailed design
  • Insulation Coordination Study
  • Lightning Protection Study

RPEQ Design Certification

We can undertake independent peer-review and verification of Secondary & Primary systems of 11/33/66/110/132/220kV AIS & GIS Substations:

  • Independent review of protection & metering single line diagram (SLD)
  • Independent review of detailed design for all DC, AC systems & associated SCADA systems
  • Independent review of protection settings and their application suitability
  • Independent review of Substation battery system (battery size and configuration)
  • Independent review of all substation HV equipment, GAs and conduits & pits
  • RPEQ Certification

The Queensland Professional Engineers Act 2002 prescribes that professional engineering services may only be provided by individuals registered as professional engineers. Registration as a Professional Engineer of Queensland (RPEQ) is recognition of the qualifications and competencies of an Engineer in their area of expertise.

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