Intelligent Digital Design System achieves global recognition

07 November 2022

Essential Energy is committed to delivering an energy network of the future - decarbonised, decentralised, and digitalised. To help achieve this goal, Essential Energy has developed an Intelligent Digital Design System (IDDS), for substation projects.

Digitising the design of an Essential Energy substation required automating the existing manual processes, developing an agile design approach and multi-system integrations.

The new digital system was designed to increase project efficiencies, reduce safety risks, and decrease environmental impacts, across the entire capital works portfolio.

While developing the solution, the greatest challenge faced by our Network Design and Information Technology teams was acquiring real time data and technology compatibility.

The team created an end-to-end process, leveraging the technology in the Bentley platform - starting with a 3D reality model of each project site, integrated with intelligent comprehensive substation design tools, which is enabling them to develop sophisticated designs.

This intelligent solution for substation design provides the key building blocks for integration with Essential Energy’s digital twin and enterprise asset management systems, creating greater network resilience, increased capability, and further cost reductions.

Essential Energy’s in-house fleet of high-powered drones have been instrumental in the capture of real-time data. They provide an accurate picture of the construction landscape, enabling a precise and agile design process. The in-built automation and governance workflows ensure the approved designs are easily shared with the in-field teams, in readable formats on iPads.

The Bentley-based Intelligent Digital Design System was officially rolled out in mid-2022 and is used on substation designs projects across the entire Essential Energy network. The System is delivering a 50 per cent reduction in project design costs, lowering environmental impacts, as well as decreasing safety risks associated with manual on-site work.

Essential Energy’s Intelligent Digital Design System recently achieved global recognition as a finalist in the 2022 Going Digital Awards in Infrastructure.