Cooling Tower Inspection

The objective of this project was to complete a visual inspection of a hyperbolic cooling tower at a power generation plant and then use the photographic data to complete a 3D model of the structure.  The customer will use the data to prioritize maintenance activities and use the 3D model to provide clear scope details for contractor repair pricing.  Orbital flew multiple vertical flights to compile data.  Both standard 4K photographic data and infrared data were recorded.  The photographic data recorded was imported into Pix4D software that allowed the creation of two individual 3D models of the cooling tower – standard and infrared.  A DJI Inspire 1 UAV was used for the inspection.

  • Onsite time: 8 hours
  • Flight time: 3 hours

The customer in the past had contractors rappel down the side of the cooling tower during an outage to inspect and repair at the same time.  This method has some inefficiencies such as; outage required, scope of repair work not known prior securing contractor and a lot more time required. Use of the UAV keeps personnel out of exposures to hazards.