As world demand for more and cleaner energy grows, many are turning to wind turbines. This has created an urgent need for routine inspections and maintenance to assure a steady power supply with no disruptions.
MW Groups business area Geospatial Services has expanded its portfolio of UAS-based services providing wind turbine inspections for its partner WPS Sweden. Our Head of UAS Operations, Magnus Selin, is the chief UAS pilot that has recently completed a 30-wind turbine inspection project that provided many considerable environmental challenges including high winds, low ceilings, ice, and snow. According to Magnus, there can be difficulties using small UASs including “ice build-up on the turbine blades and especially short flight windows to inspect the turbines in the winter months.”
Nevertheless, wind turbine inspections are crucial for ensuring they perform at optimal efficiency throughout their lifecycle. The turbine blades are one of the most important components and are exposed to an incredibly high risk of damage from lightning strikes, bird strikes, excessive surface wear from particles in the wind, to even ice damage in the winter. Damage to a single turbine blade not only reduces the energy-producing efficiency but compounds the risk of total asset loss due to stress and unbalanced turbine rotation.
“We know how valuable our inspections of the clients’ wind turbines are for their operations planning. We are constantly finding innovative ways and technical means to further refine our workflows to provide our clients immediate response and intelligence anytime and anywhere they need us,” Magnus Selin, Head of UAS Operations at MW Geospatial Services.
In the coming weeks, our team will deploy to northern Sweden to gather high-resolution imagery data that will be transformed into actionable intelligence following a stormy winter 2022 season. Later in the year, we will begin to offer thermographic inspections as a value-adding capability to provide our clients with enhanced insights into their valuable assets.
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