Hello everyone!

I work for a municipal elelctricity distributer. Specifically, I design substation control systems. We have been looking into some form of electrical CAD system for a while now. Presently drawings are done in AutoCAD and are non-intellighent drawings. I'd like to change that.

We have looked at RSWire and even have one license of it sitting on the shelf. The problem I kept running into with them had to do with two areas. I'd appreciate any feedback on whether AutoCAD Electrical would address these issues.

Issue 1 - We have a LOT of plant that would (at some point) need to be modified using the new tools. Is it required (or perhaps preferred) that the existing controls be re-documented in ACE before moving forward with changes? Or should this be seen as a "going forward" system and only do new substations in ACE? (Not exactly a great solution.) Basically, can the old and the new be integrated in some way so that as changes are made, the old unitelligent drawings are gradually replaced?

Issue 2 - Changes. We quite frequently change things in our substations. Upgrading relays, new breakers, new comminucations equipment, etc. When these changes are made, how well can ACE track the changes from one revision to the next? And would we have to have complete near duplicate "projects" for each revision? Or can a few drawings be changed and the rest left as is? Some of our projects (substations) may have 300+ drawings. A change may mean editing anywhere from 10% to 50% of these. Depends on the changes needed.

Semi Issue 3 - Symbol libraries. Other than the base IEC and JIC libraries, RSWire had few libraries available (even through 3rd party suppliers). Does ACE fare any better in that respect? We use a lot of high end solid state control relays that will probably have to be modeled in-house for any package we choose, but I would like to reduce the amount of that sort of thing as much as I can.

Thanks for any help you can offer.