Grid failures are expensive, inconvenient and potentially hazardous. Tracking faults-to-earth account for most rural power outages. Cracks in faulty insulators emit a radio frequency signal over UHF/VHF and can be detected using speciailised equipment. Existing fault detection systems are either man-borne, slow and expensive to operate, or Aerial – Light aircraft and helicopters that are used require extensive and costly support. In 2015, US inspection costs for power lines amounted to $23.50 per mile, leading to an approximate annual bill of $3.5M
PACTEC’s GridAlert incorporates our CONSENS technology with a drone. The drone is programmed with a flight plan or can be controlled remotely. As it travels along a power line it reads the signal emitted by faulty insulators. Any spikes in the signal, which indicate the location of a faulty insulator are logged along with the GPS coordinates.