Drone inspections planned for transmission lines in Marinette, Oconto and Brown counties
ATC trying new technology as an option for transmission line inspections
PEWAUKEE, Wis. – A drone will be used next week to inspect portions of two 69,000-volt transmission lines near the Town of Beaver and continuing south to Green Bay.
American Transmission Co. has contracted with HAZON Solutions, LLC to conduct a pilot program to evaluate using drones to inspect transmission lines on its system. The drone used by HAZON is approximately 25 pounds, 2.5 feet in diameter, has eight rotors and is equipped with a high-resolution camera.
“We’re evaluating this new technology as a potential alternative to some inspections currently being performed from helicopters or by ground crews,” said Duane Schoon, ATC manager of asset maintenance and commissioning. “Drones can be especially useful when inspecting transmission lines in difficult-to-reach areas, such as near buildings, roads or recreational trails.”
Drones are increasingly being used by utilities across the nation for inspection purposes. If the pilot program is successful, ATC will evaluate using drone technology in other parts of its service area.
Inspection of the transmission system is important to help ensure public safety and electric system reliability. ATC performs routine inspections of its 9,530 miles of transmission lines and 530 substations.
The inspection is scheduled to run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 26 through 30, but is weather dependent.
A video of similar drone inspection work is available on our YouTube channel.