Vestas Utilizes New Blade Inspection Technology

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Sulzer & Schmid, a Swiss company pioneering UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) technology for wind rotor blade inspections, says Vestas has extended the use of its new DJI drone-based blade inspection technology to offer enhanced inspection services across the Asia-Pacific region. 

Sulzer & Schmid’s solution combines autonomous flight function, high-resolution imaging and an advanced software interface enabling Vestas to reduce blade inspection time and maximize turbine uptime.

To bring this new solution to the market, Sulzer & Schmid and DJI have combined their respective expertise to develop a new flight technology stack that enables the industrial-grade UAV DJI Matrice 210 to autonomously inspect wind turbine blades.

The autonomous flight hardware and software are sub-components of the 3DXTM Inspection Platform of Sulzer & Schmid. This platform supports the entire inspection workflow which includes data capture, processing and result exploration. The high-quality images captured by the drones are analyzed aided by artificial intelligence, and data mining across entire wind energy portfolios are performed via Sulzer & Schmid’s proprietary 3DX Blade Health Platform.

“We are convinced that our 3DXTM Inspection Platform will make wind energy more cost-effective, as it provides the essential data foundation needed to optimize repair campaigns through predictive damage progression analytics,” says Tom Sulzer, CEO of Sulzer & Schmid.

With this new technology, Vestas expands its existing offering for blade servicing and maintenance. Vestas has initially deployed the solution to interested customers in Australia and will now be expanding the service to other countries in the Asia Pacific Region. Drone technology has tremendous potential to drive digital transformation across a range of industries.

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