Top 4 Applications of Drones in Civil Infrastructure Inspection

Top 4 Applications of Drones in Civil Infrastructure Inspection

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Monitoring any civil infrastructure is essential as it provides a quantitative understanding of the same. It can be regarding any measurement or even strains and displacements; it is a mandatory task to ensure safety when it comes to constructions like highways, airports, bridges, etc. And this is where drone infrastructure inspection proves useful. Not only does this advanced technology help in better upkeep of the constructions, but it is also environmentally friendly. Meanwhile, in a time of global climate crisis, it cannot get any better since drones can easily inspect any decay in the construction energy efficiently.  

So here are a few examples of how a well-designed drone infrastructure inspection program can help. 

  • Aircraft Inspection

There have been many instances of aircraft accidents and deaths due to human errors throughout history. There were 176 deaths in 2021 alone due to air crashes, but this could be due to uncontrollable factors, like the weather. However, a thorough infrastructure inspection of the aircraft using a drone can eliminate the chances of errors by human inspectors and technicians. 

Also, inspecting an aircraft in a conventional way takes a lot of time and effort, and they can be quite expensive as well. But, drone inspections can be quick and flawless. These advanced UAV systems (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) can easily access any part of the aircraft without assistance. 

  • Crane Examination

Inspection of the cranes is a vital task for ensuring the safety of the construction workers and the bystanders. This is especially true for tower cranes used for building tall constructions. 

The crane has various components which need to function correctly at all times. This includes the hydraulic systems, the operating mechanisms, and the hooks and hoist chains. Additionally, it is not just for the crane’s proper functionality but is also a legal requirement in many countries. 

So while manually inspecting all of these is a tedious task, UAVs like drones can make the job easier. They can complete the inspection in much less time, ensuring further safety and legal compliance.

  • Tower Inspection

Drone infrastructure inspection is applicable for different types of towers. Meanwhile, with the advent of the 5G network, the number of cell towers is bound to increase. These steel-made towers are susceptible to rust and can become weak and unstable during high wind. Hence, sending a human inspector with heavy equipment to the top of the tower can be dangerous. And in the conventional method, one person has to climb up the towers while another remains on the ground. 

But drones can prove to be a safer alternative in this area as well. They are also a much more reliable solution for providing accurate data on the condition and maintenance status of the tower. 

  • Bridge Inspection

Another application of drone inspection is the evaluation of the bridges. Usually, this task is performed by a snooper truck which is heavy and expensive. And if any obstacles are present, this expense can even go higher. 

On the other hand, drones can fly underneath a bridge or between any small space without difficulty and in less time. Also, these UAVs are not costly and are easily replaceable. Lastly, the best part is that drones can function irrespective of the traffic level. 

Inspection of the civil infrastructure is vital since the convenience and safety of the public depend on it. However, conducting the conventional manual inspection is time-consuming, expensive, not to mention dangerous. Hence, when it comes to asset and infrastructure inspection, drones are unmatched, as they are highly efficient and cost-effective. In addition, they can reduce carbon emissions rapidly. They are also easily replaceable and save people from potential danger. As such, using them for inspection purposes makes perfect sense. 

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