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Power Line Surveys


Many, if not all, electricity networks are entirely repairable or upgradeable. Existing power lines that experience faults can be upgraded or repaired, but normally at high cost. It is virtually impossible to do any work planning for said upgrades effectively and efficiently without a comprehensive and up-to-date insight into the condition of the entire electricity network.

Power line surveys are best performed by helicopter. With experienced crew onboard which are able to interpret defects, excellent visibility, the ability to fly low and slow, or hover, make the helicopter the best aerial patrol aircraft. The helicopter's ability to land immediately to evaluate a non-conformance activity in the servitude, or to provide real-time feedback to the client, is a valuable assessment and prevention tool.

The outcome of an audit report enables an electrical asset owner to achieve a state of safety, availability of supply improvements and service life objectives at an optimal cost. Environmental impacts within the servitude of the line and risk factors outside of the servitude that might have an influence on the integrity line or servitude are also recorded and reported with mitigation measures suggested.

Beyond these drivers, the reason for the inspection and assessment functions include gathering data and providing the information necessary to:

  • Ensure that the inherent safety and availability of a specific line configuration is achieved
  • Restore safety and availability of supply following degradation mitigation
  • Enhance existing hardware and the design of new facilities
  • Forecast and plan maintenance
  • Extend facility life

With our multi tasking helicopter platform, we carry out power line patrols and produce the following output:

  • High Definition (HD) wide angle video of the entire servitude.
  • With a 4-axis active gyro stabilized camera platform, slaved to GPS:
    • Hot spots anomalies captured with our Digital Radiometric Infra Red camera.
    • Corona radiation captured with a Bi Spectral UV camera.
    • HD video of selected tower hardware.
  • Experienced linesmen capture all hardware defects.
  • High Resolution (24Mp) still digital imagery of every tower position and of each type of defect found.
  • The captured data is integrated into an interfaced report (soft and hard copies):
    • Digital images of tower positions and the recorded defects overlaid onto electronic mapping software (such as Google Earth).
    • All listed defects, prioritized for maintenance planning thereby providing the ability to predict line failures.
    • Real-time radiometric thermal images that accurately show heat patterns and thermal anomalies. Temperature detection ranges from -40°C to +120°C.
    • UV report showing Corona count where applicable.
    • The report serves as a comprehensive audit of network, listing all types of hardware installed.
    • The report allows the client to plan preventative maintenance or reactive repairs at a glance.
  • Immediate, real-time feedback is supplied to the customer for priority defects, which if acted upon, will lead to the prevention of a breakdown.
  • In excess of 500 km per week can be covered by air, depending on prevailing conditions.

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