Over recent years, the advances in drone technology and cameras have dramatically improved, consequently improving the way we conduct renewable asset inspections. A modern drone has the capacity to produce high resolution and thermal imagery at the same time, allowing for more detailed, consistent and thorough inspections of your renewable assets. This reduces on site costs and downtime of the wind turbines or solar panels, as well as making it easier to identify any changes or technical issues.

SOLAR PANELS

More specifically for solar farms, drones are able to inspect panels at the correct tilt angle. As the camera angle, in relation to the panels, is so important, conducting these inspections by ground observations alone would be tedious and ineffective. It could also consequently lead to interpretation mistakes, such as fake hot points and incorrect measurements.

Hence, the position of the camera, according to reflections and emissivity, is vital. However, now thanks to drone inspections, the appropriate angle, between 5° and 60°, can be reached automatically.

WIND TURBINES

Drones are also incredibly beneficial for wind turbine inspections. This is because, in the past, these inspections have been conducted using ground-based cameras, rope access technicians or MEWPs. With the introduction of drones, it allows for minimising loss production and avoiding risk taken by technicians, amongst many others.

Drones  perform a complete visual of a wind turbine in less than an hour. Thanks to the GPS positioning system and altitude holding, inspections are simple and efficient. Moreover, drones can work with winds performing at 50 km/h.

 

Having the capability to produce a report with both types of imagery side by side far improves the quality of the inspection. As well as increasing the quality of your inspection, drones can also improve inspection safety, efficiency and accuracy. Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and technical experts, your blade or panel inspection report could be available before the operator returns home!

Find out more about how our asset management and inspection team are committed to guaranteeing high quality maintenance, including drone inspections, here.