Fully Automated Inspections Made Simple with the Power of Zenith
The semi-automation of NDT tasks is already playing a crucial role in upscaling maintenance and driving down costs in what’s becoming an ever-increasing competitive industrial market. However, the move towards full automation has, naturally, taken longer to become reality.
Robots and drones are replacing many traditional inspection methods, but most still require a considerable element of human intervention – albeit from a remote and often single operator – to carry out the task.
These tools bring many advantages over a manned inspection, such as:
- Speed: automatons reduce the time it takes to carry out an inspection
- Safety: they remove the need for humans to work in hazardous environments, such as non-oxygen atmospheres and/or at height
- Accuracy: robotic data isn’t subject to human error, therefore is more reliable
- Coverage: robots can reach areas that are difficult or impossible for a human inspector to access
- Affordability: taking less time over essential NDT means assets are offline for shorter periods, thus increasing uptime, productivity and all the monetary benefits this brings
All these reasons mean it becomes more viable to carry out proactive maintenance, rather than only adhering to mandatory testing requirements. This, in turn, leads to more accurate analysis of MTBF and the scheduling of maintenance and repairs. It also dramatically lowers unexpected breakdowns, reduces the chance of environmental disaster, increases confidence (employees, shareholders, the public) and, ultimately, increases an establishment’s bottom line.
The benefits of fully automated inspection equipment are even greater than that of their semi-automated cousins. Zenith – Interactive Aerial’s innovative vertical inspection solution – is one of the first to truly hit the mainstream.
Simple to use, fast, and operated, quite literally, at the touch of a button, this remote drop camera system will survey 150m+ (500ft) of vertical space automatically. All it requires is the input of the asset dimensions and the required photographic zoom and voila! The inspection is carried out without any intervention from human hand.
No Operator, No Training, No Fuss…
The overarching benefit of Zenith is its simplicity. Many automated inspection solutions require extensive training to use. With Zenith, no specialist knowledge is necessary, meaning maintenance teams can, quite literally, hire, lease or buy the equipment and put it straight to use.
As well as the convenience this brings, it also means that expensive man-hours aren’t wasted learning how to use it.
Zenith’s drop camera system also has an ingenious mounting system, meaning it can easily be sited to enter offset openings as well as those with more straightforward access points. The camera system captures the highest quality 4K images, can rotate through a full 360 degrees and allows for 100% asset coverage.
Inspectors can also take advantage of ‘rolled out’ 2D asset maps or use software, such as Pix4D, to create a 3D photogrammetry model.
Zenith is being successfully utilised to inspect a wide variety of assets, such as:
- Ballast tanks
- Ventilation shafts
- Bleaching towers
- Sphere tanks
- Wastewater digesters
- Dry bulk holds
- Chemical silos
Its versatility means that the camera is beneficial for multiple industries, including Oil & Gas, Petrochemicals, Mining, Agriculture and more.
Simple, Powerful and Future-Proof
Simplicity is only one element of the beauty of Zenith. Practicalities are also at the heart of this innovative technology. Along with the ease of operation and benefits already mentioned, the inspection camera also offers:
- > 2 hours operation on a single charge
- Easily transportable
- Has secondary payload capability
- Standardises the collection of data
- Provides a baseline for ‘go-back’ functionality
Such ease of operation dramatically reduces the workload for maintenance teams, allowing for a more intelligent and more productive approach. Inspections become safer, faster and more affordable, leading to assets that last longer and, therefore, have a reduced lifespan cost.
Of course, technology is only as good as the latest release. That’s why Zenith has been created as an evolving tool. As tech advances, so too will the platform of this unique inspection equipment. Interactive Aerial is well-known for its push-the-boundaries developments, hence the requirement for this advanced camera to be fully able to integrate with future tech.
From its unique push-button operation through to its evolutionary advancements, Zenith is a one-of-a-kind inspection camera that’s breaking the mould of traditional NDT tasks.
You might also find this useful: Full Automation Has Arrived – And Its Name Is Zenith!