Reflecting on the Democratization of Wind Turbine Inspections: A Recap of our time at the 4th Annual Global Wind Turbine Forum in Barcelona
After a successful week of meeting new people, greeting old friends, learning, and networking it’s time to reflect on vHive’s days at the 4th Annual Global Wind Turbine Operations, Maintenance and Life Cycle Management Forum in Barcelona.
The event featured a diverse attendee list along with a thought-provoking lineup of speakers and topics. Topics discussed included: the role of digitalization in asset management, the relationship between the operator and OEM, supply chain challenges, data-driven maintenance plans, and of course the use of drones as a part of your blade inspection and maintenance strategy.
It was clear during our time at this forum that drones are not a novel tool in the wind turbine industry. For almost as long as wind turbines have been operating globally, drones have played some part in the inspection, repair, and management of turbine assets. The downside of these inspections has been the use of complex, expensive drone hardware along with a professional pilot to operate said hardware. As a result of this, asset owners have had to rely heavily on third parties to carry out the inspections of their blades. While third parties may be great in some industries, wind can be a tricky one. Turbines are oftentimes located in hard-to-reach areas, with unpredictable weather conditions. This makes accommodating a third party logistically difficult and expensive.
From Third-Party Reliance to Operator Control
vHive understands these headaches and fortunately comes with a solution to eliminate them altogether by introducing the democratization of wind turbine inspections and analysis. By allowing operators to have their own fleet of fully autonomous, small, off-the-shelf commercial drones, inspections can happen wherever, and whenever a customer wants. This brings choice back into the equation of a wind turbine inspection. No longer will operators be stuck with unexpected deployment fees when bad weather rolls in and cancels a third-party inspection. Simply wait a few hours or try a different day when it makes more sense for you.
Choice Matters: The Role of Autonomy in Turbine Inspections
vHive is committed to bringing the inspection back into the hands of the operator. Allowing our customers to control all aspects of the inspection including when and where it happens, how long it takes, and who owns the data. Everything is in the hands of the operator, leading to a more seamless and worry-free inspection process. This is the democratized way, this is the vHive way.