Structures that offer critical services require constant inspection to prevent the occurrences of catastrophic failure that could potentially cause a loss both in monetary as well as societal value. This is particularly true in the power generation industry where outage time during planned inspections need to be kept to a minimum. Inspection of large vertical concrete structures is especially time consuming and cost-intensive due to the process of gaining access to the outside of the building which invariably involves erecting scaffolding before manual inspection commences.
Automation of the inspection of power plants and other large buildings (with robots that can climb vertical concrete structures to deploy an NDT payload) will completely eliminate scaffold erection costs and reduce inspection build times and related costs.The SME proposers of this project have built their businesses on successfully commercialising technology in robotics, software and Non-destructive testing (NDT) technologies and have identified a new market opportunity that will enable them to offer an innovative product set to expand their European, North American and Asian markets by €17 million in revenue 5 years post project.
The SMEs propose to develop and validate for the purpose of commercialisation, wall climbing vortex robot technology for the rapid scanning of large vertical concrete structures in combination with enhanced probes and techniques to improve the NDT of these structures. A solution designed to significantly reduce the inspection time and cost for power plant operators.