Geo Week News

November 8, 2022

Automation and Productivity for Power Grid Inspections Improved with New Partnership

Phase One and LINIA join forces to improve processes for an often arduous process.
Phase One LINIA Partnership Image
via Phase One

Companies across many sectors take advantage of the value that can be derived from aerial imagery, though to get the most value out of it they need the highest resolution imagery they can find. That’s where Phase One comes in, as they work to provide the highest quality of digital imagery in three key focus areas. That includes cultural heritage and bespoke photography, which don’t really fall into the aerial imagery category, but their third focus area of geospatial fits into that group. As they continue to look for ways to provide the most value for their customers, Phase One recently announced a new partnership with LINIA to, in their words, “increase automation and productivity of power grid inspections.”

By partnering with LINIA, who specializes in automated processes for UAV-based inspections, customers will now have access to the hardware required to produce the highest resolution imagery alongside software to gain automated insights from said imagery. Powerline inspections can be an arduous process, dealing with often rugged terrains and remote locations. Utilizing UAVs is ideal for this use case to keep people out of potentially harmful situations, as long as key insights can still be derived. This partnership will allow for high resolution imagery to be produced with insights automatically derived from LINIA’s software.

In the press release for this new partnership, the two companies call out a handful of key value adds that are provided from the two products being merged. Firstly, they note that speed will be improved from this partnership, noting that a single 15-20 minute flight allows for photos of three TSO-towers or four to six DSO-towers can be acquired. In addition to speed, they also point to the reduction of site visits and unwanted shutdowns due to surprise repairs, resulting in significant cost savings. The high resolution and automated software also leads to better documentation and observation, which in turn leads to improved management and more effective maintenance practices, as well as faster restoration of power supply in case of outages. And, most importantly, this workflow reduces the need for human intervention at these sites, leading to a safer environment for workers.

This new partnership can benefit all organizations performing powerline inspections, with the value only increasing as the workload increases. For firms tasked with a large number of inspections to be completed, that can lead to long hours and/or unsafe conditions to try and complete all of their work on time. Having this end-to-end process to produce high-resolution imagery along with a software solution to derive automated insights can take away those pain points and allow those inspections to be done relatively quickly, and certainly much more safely. 

On the partnership, Phase One Portfolio Director for Drones and UAVs Michael Messerschmidt said, “Together with our joint customer, we have proven the value that our solution can provide for power grid inspections. Not only did they save time and increased efficiency when completing their +1000 transmission power inspections, but they also managed to capture high quality data while also eliminating inspection hazards by safely inspect assets at dangerous heights, high-voltage areas and hard-to-reach locations without putting employees at risk.”

LINIA co-founder Lorenzo Arizzoli-Bulato added, “A drone pilot can easily capture data of a single power line tower. The challenge rises, when 1000 or more towers need to be inspected in a short period of time. How do you ensure a consistent, safe and well-structured data acquisition? That is where LINIA adds value to the inspection process.”

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