‘Flying drones and AI could replace weak link in maintenance – humans’

A new report suggests these technologies could dramatically speed up inspection of turbine blades and power transmission equipment

Flying drones equipped with artificial intelligence (AI) could soon replace the weakest part of energy infrastructure maintenance processes – humans.

That’s according to drone firm AirFusion, which suggests rather than analysts poring over hundreds of images and videos – which sometimes takes weeks to find cracks or holes in blades or other critical equipment – AI and machine learning tools can now be used to dramatically speed up inspection of turbine blades and power transmission equipment.

It says new technologies can also detect cracks and potential failure points more accurately than human analysts, as machine learning continues to get ‘smarter’ the more it’s used and never forgets anything.

The company says AI is also very accurate in predicting potential failures in expensive wind turbines in advance, saving power companies millions in revenue lost to downtime.

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