MHPS to Use Drones for Inspecting Power Plant Boilers
- Technology to Shorten Downtimes, Extend Period between Regular Inspections, and Allow for Quick and Appropriate Response to Emergencies -
- Demonstration testing for manually operated UAV completed, with service to be offered from April 2019
- Technology verification being conducted with autonomous UAV prototype, with practical application planned for fiscal 2020
YOKOHAMA, Japan, Mar, 12 2019 - (JCN Newswire) - Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd. (MHPS) is putting into practical service unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to more easily and efficiently inspect the interiors of power plant boilers and other large indoor structures. Demonstration testing for manually operated drones was completed last year, and MHPS plans to begin offering the inspection service from April 2019.
MHPS is also pursuing development of autonomous UAVs, together with research and development firm A.L.I. Technologies Inc. Basic technology verification tests were conducted using a prototype device, and were completed last year. MHPS' production of the device and practical application is planned for fiscal 2020. The aim is to facilitate shorter downtimes of facilities, longer periods between regular inspections, and a quick and appropriate response to emergencies.
Manually operated UAVs used to inspect the inside of power plant boilers and other structures, will utilize MHPS' collision and environment resistant technologies, and have been under development since fiscal 2016. The test demonstration in December of 2018 was conducted with the support of Mitsubishi Heavy Industry's Research & Innovation Center, and the use of actual test facilities and boilers.
Autonomous UAVs purposed for inspections, have been jointly developed by MHPS and A.L.I. Technologies since fiscal 2017, using multiple test boilers and mockups of actual boiler environments. Basic technology verification tests conducted in September of 2018 confirmed the capability for autonomous flight without using GPS or other satellite positioning systems. The practical application of UAVs using satellite positioning systems is already well advanced, but operational technologies in special environments, such as the inside of boilers, have yet to be established, making practical application a breakthrough technology. A.L.I. Technologies' business scope consists predominantly of drone-related applications and edge computing technologies.
MHPS, by developing drone-enabled power plant inspection technologies and providing advanced after-sales services for power generation facilities, will further enhance stable energy supplies and contribute to global economic development, while lessening the environmental load.
About Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd.
Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd. (MHPS), headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, is a joint venture formed in February 2014 by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and Hitachi, Ltd. integrating their operations in thermal power generation systems and other related businesses. MHPS today ranks among the world's leading suppliers of equipment and services to the power generation market, backed by 100 billion yen in capital and approximately 20,000 employees worldwide. The Company's products include GTCC (gas turbine combined-cycle) and IGCC (integrated coal gasification combined-cycle) power plants, gas/coal/oil-fired (steam) power plants, boilers, generators, gas and steam turbines, geothermal power plants, AQCS (air quality control systems), power plant peripheral equipment, digital solutions and solid-oxide fuel cells (SOFC).
For more information, please visit www.mhps.com.
Corporate Communication Department
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
Email: [email protected]
Source: Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd.
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