Thermographic inspection with drones for preventive maintenance of CCPs plants

Taking advantage of technologies such as thermography, image processing and artificial intelligence, bcb has developed innovative systems such as the inspection of collector tubes in parabolic trough collector plants, the automatic calibration of heliostats in towers, the measurement of receiver temperature or the measurement of solar attenuation, among others.

Solar thermal energy has been gaining importance in Spain over the years, including plants with parabolic trough collectors, currently having more than 30 installations throughout the country. The need for preventive maintenance is now a reality, since you can save miles of euros thanks to increased productivity.

bcb has 25 years providing solutions based on thermography and image processing, including the solar thermal sector, with projects such as the automatic calibration of heliostats in tower plants in China, South Africa, the USA or Spain. Following this line, with the intention of diversifying its portfolio of solutions for this growing industry, bcb has developed an inspection service for parabolic trough collector plants. Based on tests carried out in two pilot plants for preventive maintenance, the service includes thermography with FLIR cameras integrated to its latest development, the bcbMonitor 4.0, and high-performance drones, specifically developed for industrial applications.
bcb has developed phase 1 of the service, where the system categorizes the pipes according to the degree of damage and losses they suffer. Automation
This process means a large saving of resources for the plant in terms of time, money and labor. Phase 2 will also include other parameters such as the measurement of the tube buckling, the condition of the coating of the glass and metal tube, the dirt of the mirrors and the tube, the detection of breaks in mirrors and tubes, the inspection of joints. rotaries, valves, pipes, lyres and salt tanks, in case of storage. Regarding the power island, high resolution 3D models and mosaics with visible and infrared information are also built. Aligned with the strong presence of Industry 4.0, bcb has incorporated AI / ML techniques using CNN for image processing, both visible and IR.