INSPECTION

We are nvolutionary

We make it possible to inspect areas difficult to access. Using drone technology, we ensure that inspection can be executed safely, effectively and fast no matter the size of the wind turbine.

nvisionist_inspection_visual_new_1

Wind turbine facts

A wind turbine will generally last for 20 years, although this can be extended to 25 years or longer depending on environmental factors and the correct maintenance procedures being followed.

Wind farm operators are faced with business decisions as their assets age – whether to continue operation, repower or to decommission. These decisions are affected by the physical condition compared to the theoretical lifetime of the turbines.
On-site inspections and monitoring tools help evaluate these factors to ensure wind farms operate safely within their design lifetime. This lifetime can be extended or shortened, depending on damage caused by environmental factors and fatigue. Wind turbines and their component parts should be inspected at multiple stages across their lifespan.

 

From manufacturing and assembly to assessing performance in the field, damage investigations, and end of warranty checks. It’s become clear that the best way to approach these challenges is to ensure wind turbines are regularly inspected and maintained for as long as they are in operation. As with any form of proactive industrial inspection, frequent inspections can be expensive, particularly when you are operating a large wind farm. But they are arguably still cheaper than the cost of a catastrophic failure. Regular preventive maintenance can significantly extend the viable lifespan of turbines and ensure that they output maximum power in all conditions.

The Problem

The past years inspection crews relied on simple tools to get a closer look at wind turbines: binoculars, ropes, high-definition ground cameras using long range photography or by climbing which could prove to be slow and dangerous work. But all these approaches have drawbacks, which range from poor accuracy to safety fears and hours of expensive downtime. It is even more complicated when inspecting an offshore wind park, where access is critical. Revenue losses can be substantial during the maintenance periods and are exacerbated by the funding needed to pay for them.

The Solution

Wind turbine blade inspection using drones is an obvious way to approach that challenge. The adoption of the technology has coincided with the realization from operators that proactive inspections are the best way to identify damage and maintain equipment in the long run. A drone can fly around a turbine and gather high-definition photos and videos of blades in a matter of minutes and offering a safe, efficient, and dynamic way to inspect many of a wind turbine’s components as the blade, the gearbox and the generator.

Drones make it possible to detect structural incidents in wind turbine blades and serve as a guide during maintenance, saving considerable costs and increasing safety. The inspection could not be safer compared to inspections made by means of vertical work. The work can be executed without being exposed to the risks inherent to working at such heights.

 

Drones can capture close-up, detailed imagery of potential defects that enable maintenance personnel to really see what’s going on. Drones can also capture tower, pole, and turbine images from most any angle, which is often not possible with other inspection methods.

Flight paths can be preset and missions can be flown at regular intervals. This gives operators the ability to gather information as part of a repeatable process, building a picture over time, not just in the moment. Capturing data and carrying out an analysis identifying anomalies can be done at a fraction of the time needed using traditional methods which means 4 to 5 times less downtime. A trained and experienced UAV pilot can inspect up to 11 wind turbines per day. Engineers on the ground can use that data to make objective decisions on whether any damage is serious or superficial and take action from there.

Drones make it possible to detect structural incidents in wind turbine blades and serve as a guide during maintenance, saving considerable costs and increasing safety.

Drone inspection combined with thermal cameras

It’s also possible to use drones equipped with thermal cameras to gather data on rotor blade condition. Thermal imaging can offer a visualization of temperature across large areas for the sake of comparison between one turbine and another. Equally, defects, corrosion and damage that might otherwise be hidden can be spotted more easily.

Drone Data is highly accurate and detailed

The value of drones is in the data they can provide. The ability to capture photos of equipment is helpful, but what happens with those photos is the magic of an integrated drone data program.

Data can increase revenue and safe hundreds of hazardous man-hours and let you track the status of the anomalies and generate more filtered reports according to your needs while providing better business information. Data help asset managers make better decisions about needed repairs, thus optimizing their maintenance budgets and minimizing downtime. A full report will be delivered to you at the end of the service. The report as well as all the high-resolution images are available on cloud.

Due to data collection, processing and reporting, companies are now able to achieve more effective asset management and strengthened business intelligence.

As climbs and ropes are dangerous, drone inspections provide safety and reduces crew risks.  Inspector no longer has to be put into potentially dangerous situations. By significantly reducing the amount of time personnel is placed in dangerous situations companies can also reduce their corresponding insurance costs.

Take action immediately with clear insights into each turbine blade’s history and damages over time, resulting in faster fixes and greater energy production per turbine.

Drone inspection services are less expensive than traditional inspection methods. High definition images enables earlier detection of anomalies, saving more money and time. For assets like wind turbines, which need to be shut off before an inspection can be performed, every second of downtime means a loss of revenue. Using a drone to make turnarounds more efficient can mean big savings for companies that use these assets in their operations.

Drone data represents a meticulous record of the condition of an asset over time. By archiving visual data, companies have a digital footprint of the asset’s life history that can be accessed at any time.

Inspection using drones help energy companies and wind farm operators to meet their goals of extending the life of their facilities and increasing wind turbine’s efficiency.

nvisionist_inspection_bird_icon
nvisionist_security_animation_2
nvisionist_security_animation_4
nvisionist_nvbird_about_animation_5
nvisionist_inspection_animation_1
nvisionist_inspection_animation_2

If you are interested in working with our skilled pilots and experienced team
to carry out inspections on your wind assets, feel free to contact us.

error: Content is protected !!

nvbird distinctions