CIRIA -The use of unmanned aerial vehicles for infrastructure asset management (RP1063)

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are being employed for asset inspection by a growing number of organisations throughout the UK and globally. Their use allows for safer and simpler inspection where access in and around the asset is particularly difficult. Other benefits over more traditional inspection techniques include the way the data can be collected and interpreted. Their use is often complementary to existing infrastructure asset management techniques and this is set to grow as more organisations take up this new technology to drive down costs. Although their operational use is regulated by the Civil Aviation Authority there is little in the way of independent industry accepted guidance for their use within infrastructure asset management strategies.

To provide benefit to those using this technology its capability and application must be understood. The information that it provides must be compatible for integration with other asset data and the asset management outcomes must be understood from the start to ensure the right UAV system is deployed and the relevant skills are in place with an organisation to manage the process. Guidance is therefore required to help establish the principles of good practice for the use of UAVs in infrastructure asset management.

Aims and objectives 

  • Cover current operational practice; where and how they might be used and how they are selected.
  • Identify the availability and application of remote monitoring technology to suit UAVs.
  • Show how the data is captured, processed and interpreted. 
  • Include a number of case studies to show successful asset management practices.
  • Outline the benefits of using good practice procedures.

This CIRIA project aims to provide good practice guidance targeted at infrastructure asset managers and those supplying this service and well as industry dissemination. The guidance will enable clients and infrastructure managers and those providing asset management services to better understand how this technology can be used within their organisations to improve their asset management capability.

Download the full proposal.

Project status
CIRIA is seeking industry involvement and funding.

Further information
To find out more and get involved, please contact Kieran Tully at CIRIA.

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