The Electricity Supply Industry of Australia and its consumers have gained overwhelming momentum through media personnel and governments over the past decade. This is due to rigorous challenges prompted by climate change, escalating energy prices, diminishing resources, cyber security and system stability. These influences have led to the commercialization of new technologies and policies including the National Broadband Network (NBN) and Carbon Tax. However, the motivation to improve the Energy Sector must look well beyond rudimentary renewable energy technologies and smart grid infrastructures such as solar and wind, and provide a robust solution that can cope with Australia's rising population growth and base-load demands. This vision is supported by many electrical utilities worldwide and attempts to couple substation communication standards like the IEC61850 international protocol with modern grid architectures is at the forefront of research developments. The authors of this paper aim to demonstrate the practical assembly, configuration and testing of a new and innovative portable IEC61850 testing unit capable of multi-vendor interoperability between different types of Intelligent Electronic Devices (IEDs). The portable IEC61850 testing unit serves as a platform for the development, research and training of university students and power system personnel. The paper provides all hardware schematics, virtual wiring maps and GOOSE mapping matrices. A comprehensive insight into both individual and overall system configurations is also reviewed.