Electrical Equipment Lifecycle Management

Intelligent Design Process Delivers for Substation

EP Editorial Staff | July 12, 2018

Despite the project’s complexity, design time was cut in half.

SATRIA Technologies, a small start-up company in Selangor, Malaysia, provides engineering solutions for power utilities, industries, and infrastructure. The country’s largest electricity utility, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), Kuala Lampur,
(tnb.com/my), contracted with SATRIA to design and supply control-relay panels for its new substation in Pandamaran, Klang, a vibrant city where residential, commercial, and industrial-infrastructure projects are booming. The contract required SATRIA to design six different protection and control schemes for nineteen 33-kV/11-kV units to fit in a compact space within the substation.

In prior TNB projects, SATRIA engineers had a month to deliver conceptual drawings and schematic designs. For this engagement, however, TNB mandated that SATRIA complete initial and detailed electrical design and panel-arrangement drawings within a 20-day time frame. “We keep our promises to always deliver on time. It is one of our core factors,” stated Gottfried Zeller, director at SATRIA Technologies. Meeting TNB’s demand on this fast-tracked project called for another “Promis.e”—collaborative, intelligent-modeling technology from Bentley Systems, Exton, PA (bentley.com).


As a means of standardizing its electrical-design project, SATRIA moved from using AutoCAD to Bentley Systems’ Promis.e. To do this, a team of engineers spent three months transferring data and libraries of information into Promis.e to build a central database with intelligent properties. The group created the catalog, title block, symbols, standard parts library, and report templates that could be tailored to the specific needs of individual clients and used to support all electrical-engineering projects.

With the central database complete and stored on SATRIA’s server, the company arranged a network configuration so that all engineers and draftsmen could have simultaneous access to a particular project or library in the system. This facilitated collaboration and ensured consistency across all designs and drawings. The flexibility of Promis.e allowed the project team to easily configure the information in the database and efficiently design the different types of control-relay panels according to TNB’s specifications.

Bentley Systems’ Promis.e helped small start-up
company SATRIA Technologies design, and ultimately deliver, a complicated, fast-tracked order of 19 control-relay panels on time for a Tenaga Nasional Berhard substation in Pandamaran, Klang, Malaysia.


With intelligent automated functions in place within Promis.e, SATRIA now had a reliable, organized design process to accelerate information sharing and project delivery times while minimizing the risk of errors.

“When we used AutoCAD,” Zeller explained, “we had hundreds of pages of designs that had to be printed and all the cross references checked manually by engineers who would then go back to the workstation to make the corrections in the system. Maybe they corrected 80%.”

Promis.e allows SATRIA engineers to develop an intelligent model that links, cross-references, and checks for errors on all project drawings and documents. Using the parts database to build the model, engineers pick and place the required symbols and assign the specific device details by selection. The software then automatically generates bills of materials (BOMs) and reports that otherwise would be done manually.

Finally, the ability to export designs and drawings to multiple file formats simplifies communication with the client and stakeholders for a more efficient review and revision process. Using Bentley’s flexible, interoperable technology to automate tedious tasks and streamline design workflows reduces errors and enhances engineering efficiencies, enabling SATRIA to remain competitive within the industry.


The Pandamaran substation project for TNB was the first that SATRIA completed 100% with Promis.e. Previously, designing 19 panels of six different types would have taken five to six weeks to prepare the drawings, complete the designs, and submit for customer review and approval before manufacturing. With Promis.e, the design-engineering process was reduced by 50%.

Among other things, the automated cross-referencing functions in Promis.e reduced resource hours for terminal-function report generation from days to seconds. Using the templates and macros created in the database enabled engineers to produce schematic drawings for the panels within one day instead of two. Having a collaborative, standardized design process reduced design mistakes, drafting errors, and preparation of bills of materials by 20% to 25% and resulted in minimal waste.


“A transformation from manual to automation during the design stage provides a different way of working,” explained Mohd Farid Ramli, systems engineer at SATRIA. “Using Promis.e to automate tedious tasks in traditional electrical design significantly reduced design time and cost of errors on the Pandaraman project.” The capabilities reflected in that “different way of working” bode well for future SATRIA projects.

With the accessible database and templates that have been developed, SATRIA can customize designs specific to individual client requirements. The cross-referencing capabilities, advanced copy/paste functions, and ability to export drawings to different file formats in Promis.e enables a streamlined approach to electrical design and provides a design advantage that can be applied to all types of electrical system designs.

Based upon its initial implementation and successful submission of control-relay panels to TNB, SATRIA’s intelligent-design solution has established a solid foundation for meeting the demands of future clients and, as a result, allowed this small, start-up operation to be competitive with larger players in the industry. EP

For more information, visit bentley.com.


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