Next-generation transmission line inspection – security and efficiency with intelligence Image credit: Huawei
The backbone of the electricity system is the transmission lines and towers, which are among the most critical infrastructures and their management and maintenance are one of the most challenging tasks for operators.
In many cases across countries, they are elevated well above the ground and often in remote, hard to access, and potentially dangerous terrains. They are also subject to weather and natural disasters such as fire as well as the possibility of material theft and sabotage.
This limits the extent and frequency of inspections and the implementation of preventive maintenance programmes, with access time consuming and costly for field personnel. These personnel are subject to the hazards of working in such environments, making power grid inspection a long, hard, and risky job and personnel safety a top priority.
For example, inspectors required to climb a tower for visual fault diagnosis might cover four-tower inspections per day in easy to reach areas but only two in mountainous locations where access is more arduous. Moreover, of the up to six hours they may spend on-site, only around one hour is likely to be on the tower itself.
Innovative solutions taking advantage of new monitoring, communication and data management, and visualisation technologies thus offer the potential for new levels of efficiency and safety.
Zhongshan Power Supply Bureau – improving efficiencies
Zhongshan Power Supply Bureau, the electricity supplier for Zhongshan, a city in southern China, was experiencing a high incidence of unplanned power outages, averaging around twenty per year, due to the many constructions in the fast-growing city.
Faced with the difficulties of slow inspections and limited inspection coverage, the Zhongshan Power Supply Bureau partnered with Huawei to develop a solution to improve the inspection process, with cameras mounted on key transmission poles and towers in high-risk areas.
The company found that a single full-scale manual inspection taking 5 days could be reduced to 2 hours with a full-scale video inspection. In addition, the coverage density could be increased to 100%, with one set of devices per kilometre covering 2,000 towers.
Overall, the average number of unplanned outages was reduced to two per year, with real-time risk identification and automatic alarm reporting.
“The solution monitors high-risk operations, warns of risks, and helps us intervene proactively, which secures the electric power industry,” says Chen Qingjiang, Principal of Zhongshan Power Supply Bureau of China Southern Power Grid.
Click the below image to watch: Power Transmission Line Inspection — Making Power Companies Smarter
Take a journey to Zhongshan Power Supply Bureau with Robin Lu, Executive Vice President of Global Energy Business Unit of Huawei Enterprise to learn how Huawei has revolutionised power line inspections, delivering early risk warnings and identifying hidden hazards in the field. Credit: Huawei
Intelligent Transmission Line Inspection Solution 2.0
Huawei has released its Intelligent Transmission Line Inspection Solution 2.0 with an emphasis on improved security, efficiency, and eco-friendliness.
Based on a cloud-edge-device three-layer architecture, the solution utilises data from intelligent field terminals integrated via a choice of networking modes – including microwave, optical, and IP – to Huawei’s artificial intelligence-based digital and video cloud platforms to provide a remote inspection and evaluation capability.
The solution offers end-to-end service support with powerful data processing over short to ultra-long distances in different environments. In addition, it safeguards the tower bases.
Key benefits include:
● Increased security for both staff and the power grid: Remote intelligent diagnosis of potential faults alleviates the risks of harsh working environments and enables more rapid detection, thereby avoiding unplanned power outages. Remote inspection of tower bases enables the detection of intrusions and reduces the risks of theft.
● Greater efficiency: With 24/7 inspection, the inspection efficiency is improved by 80 times and the coverage density also can be greatly improved.
● Greener: Reduction in manpower and vehicle use reduces the carbon emissions and the overall carbon footprint of the utility company. The potential for early detection of environmental events such as fires is also improved.
System benefits of advanced transmission monitoring
While advanced transmission line monitoring may involve the replacement of manual with automated inspection, its impact becomes even more significant in the context of the global energy transition.
As decarbonisation grows across sectors, the need for managing the flow of intermittent solar and wind and other renewable energies across the system 24/7 becomes increasingly important to maintain this momentum.
Robin Lu , Executive Vice President of Global Energy Business Unit of Huawei Enterprise, says that the high intelligence, ad hoc network, easy installment and maintenance of the solution benefits various power companies to digitally transform their inspection task.
“This creates a more secure and more efficient inspection environment and ensures that the industry provides stable and better electricity supply to everyone in society,” said Robin Lu.
About Huawei’s Intelligent Transmission Line Inspection Solution 2.0
Huawei launched the solution at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2022 in Barcelona, where the company teamed up with industry partners to showcase innovative solutions and practices for the energy and other sectors. In particular, at MWC 2022 Huawei focused on industrial digital transformation, digital infrastructure innovation and carbon emissions reduction. In addition, Huawei released a series of scenario-based industry solutions, full-stack data centre and intelligent campus solutions, as well as the company’s latest datacom, optical and storage products.
To find out more, visit Huawei Enterprise at MWC 2022