DEWA deploys drones for PV panel inspection
The initiative will see the use of drones to support Dubai's infrastructure and aid smart technologies in serving the Emirate's residents
The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has recently announced the launch of its Sirb initiative aimed at utilising drone technology for internal services.
The initiative will see the use of drones to support Dubai’s infrastructure and aid smart technologies in serving the Emirate’s residents.
Commenting on the drone initiative, HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD and CEO of DEWA, said: “This initiative will greatly improve operational efficiency by accelerating operations, increasing safety during regular network testing and maintenance, and accurately detecting failures.”
DEWA has already deployed unamend aerial vehicles (UAVs) to oversee the inspection of photovoltaic (PV) panels atop its Sustainable Building in Al Quoz.
Producing 600 kW of electricity, the PV panels require constant cleaning to remain functional within the desert environment. The combination of dust and pollution can block sunlight, reducing efficiency and power generation capability.
The use of UAVs helps to cut inspection times down considerably, covering an approximate area of 100,000 square feet in less than five minutes. Equipped with Ultra HD (4K), the UAVs are able to relay images of a resolution of over 20 mega pixels back to the control centre.
Furthermore, the drones will tasked in inspecting the water cooling process in evaporators. This will enable DEWA to conduct regular reviews and obtain progress reports with panoramic pictures, as well as operating the evaporators for longer periods without fully shutting them down for maintenance.
“The drones provide early detection by using thermal imaging for overhead power lines. This limits risks and reduces costs, enables a quick response and is very accurate, making it easier to make informed decisions,” concluded Al Tayer.