Right in time for the start of WindEnergy 2022 in Hamburg (September 27-30), the operations man-agement and inspection company ENERTRAG Operation announces that its latest product rotor blade inspection including lightning protection system (LPS) measurement by drone will also be offered as a license model starting next year. Interested parties are invited to get further information in a per-sonal meeting with our experts at WindEnergy: Hall 4, Booth 237.
About the rotor blade inspection incl. LPS measurement with drone
In the process developed, the rotor blades of wind turbines are flown over. During this process, a high-resolution camera mounted on the drone takes images of the rotor blades from different angles, which can then be analyzed in detail. At the same time, a field strength meter, which is also attached to the drone, detects a voltage applied to the root of the blade by means of a high-voltage generator along the lightning protection line of the rotor blade. In the event of an interruption, this can be localised using the data collected.
The innovative drone inspection was developed by the partners ENERTRAG Operation and Sulzer Schmid Laboratories AG and launched in May 2022. Until September 2022, approx. 100 inspections took place and the processes as well as soft- and hardware were continuously optimized based on the experience gained, so that an optimized version of the drone inspection will already be offered from the end of 2022. "Due to the innovative nature of the process, many things were new for us, thus the development and testing period was very exciting. Now we are proud of the results the new service provides," reports Matthes Schachtner, Head of Technical Services at ENERTRAG Operation. He adds, "I would like to thank my team for their commitment and our cooperation partner Sulzer Schmid for the trusting collaboration."
Demand for license model noticeable
"Since the market launch in May, we have already received several requests regarding a license model for the drone inspection. Developing this and offering it to the market was therefore a logical step for us," reports David Müller, Head of Sales at ENERTRAG Operation. Of course, ENERTRAG Operation will continue to offer drone inspection as a service. By expanding the service portfolio to include the licensing model, the technology is now opening up to new markets and customers. By the way: the drone inspection works equally reliably onshore and offshore and thus offers great potential for operators of wind wind turbines on land and on sea.
How drone inspection works as a licence model
The drone inspection consists of two components: On the one hand, the automated flight patterns and the data evaluation platform 3DX™ Blade Platform from Sulzer Schmid Laboratories AG, and on the other hand, the method for LPS measurements on wind turbines using drones developed by ENERTRAG Operation. In combination, the components result in the possibility to perform rotor blade inspections and LPS measurements smarter, faster and safer than before.