It has analyzed more than 2,300 kilometers with thermal imaging cameras that detect unusually high temperatures
The company Endesa, through its subsidiary e-distribución, is carrying out a reinforcement during the summer of the review of its high and medium voltage overhead lines with the aim of anticipating any imperfection or sensitive point that these facilities may have and act preventively.
In the province of Badajoz, Endesa is reviewing 1,135 kilometers of high voltage lines and 1,250 km of medium voltage. To do this, Endesa technicians are using the latest technology, using helicopters equipped with cameras with thermographic vision and cutting-edge LIDAR technology for their inspections, and as a novelty this year, a 4K video camera and 150-megapixel photography have been incorporated.
The objective of the helicopter review is to detect anomalies that could affect the proper functioning of the facilities and the continuity of the electricity supply, hence the technology installed in the helicopters.
On the one hand, the thermographic cameras of the helicopter allow the inspection of the network with infrared cameras, to detect if there is any element that has a higher temperature than normal. If any anomaly is detected, the coordinates of the “weak point” are recorded and the mechanism to correct it is automatically activated.
In addition to this technology, Endesa has LIDAR (Light and Distance Detection) technology that combines GPS technology with laser sensors and allows three-dimensional maps to be made and mapping of power lines. This tool simultaneously offers information on both the relief of the terrain and the vegetation that covers it, which is very useful for creating high-resolution maps of forested areas and planning forest clearing tasks.
This material, together with the images from the 4K cameras that are used to record the entire inspection of High Voltage lines and towers, allow a detailed analysis of the vision made.
In addition, Endesa technicians are occasionally using drones in their reviews, a technology that has been applied since 2012 in Badajoz.
These devices are equipped with high-resolution cameras that allow capturing images of the lines and are especially useful for checking the status of infrastructures in areas that are difficult to access without having to interrupt supply. Drones also make it possible to verify the width of security corridors that act as firewalls.
Precisely these corridors are another part of the preventive actions that Endesa carries out between the months of October and May in coordination with the Junta de Extremadura, and consist of preventive felling and pruning of vegetation near the power lines. In this way, security corridors can be opened under the high, medium and low voltage networks, which makes it possible to avoid incidents in the electricity supply and minimize the risk of fire. The felling and selective pruning work is carried out according to the criteria stipulated in the national and regional regulations, which establish the periodicity based on the growth calendar of the different species.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.