The IEEE Conference, in Dallas, took place May 2nd through the 6th. 4Rotor Filming, a Maine based drone company specializing in utility/industrial inspection and aerial media production, and their partner Coutts Brothers, a Utility inspection and construction company based in Gardiner Maine, advertised and performed a substation inspection demo for Farmers Electric Co-op after the conference. Coutts and 4Rotor have been working with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) performing case studies set to determine the value of unmanned system inspections inside a CO-OP.
Offering comprehensive thermal and visual inspections of substations and transmission
structures utilizing unmanned platforms reduces and in some cases removes the safety risk involved with these often in-depth inspections. More data will be collected, though initially it seems the greatest benefit of this technology, when applied inside the co-ops, is the risk reduction.
Inside an industry that is inherently safety centric any device or new technology which greatly decreases the human life at risk, we can assume, will be greeted with open arms. Coutts and 4Rotor Filming will continue with these case studies and is acquiring equipment capable of Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) operations for additional case studies with the NRECA in the near future.