Unmanned vehicles for lightning protection system inspection and maintenance

David Mascareñas, Ashlee Liao, John Morales, Frederick Berl, Shawn Hailey, James Milligan, Dennis Vigil, Adam Smith, Robert Van Wrinkle

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

To date unmanned vehicles have been used extensively for performing structural inspections. These inspections have generally involved visual sensing modalities such as using conventional visual imagers or infrared imagers to look for thermal signatures indicative of structural damage. The next generation of unmanned vehicles will go beyond these non-contact inspection tasks and will begin looking at performing physical interactions with the structure in order to assess the physical integrity of the structure and to perform actual repair work on the structure itself. In this work we specifically explore the use of unmanned vehicles to perform inspections and repairs on lightning protection systems for infrastructure such as buildings and chimneys. Unmanned vehicles are a particularly attractive solution for this problem because current practice involves exposing inspection/repair technicians to the dangers associated with working at height. To ensure the safety of the inspectors it is generally necessary to install fall-protection systems or erect railings to prevent technicians from falling off roofs and chimneys. Here we begin exploring the use of unmanned vehicles to inspect the structural integrity of lightning protection systems, clean their associated ground wires, and check the tightness of installed lightning rods. The ultimate goal of this work is to develop an unmanned vehicle solution for enabling low-cost inspection and repair of lightning protection systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages2087-2092
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes
EventStructural Health Monitoring 2019: Enabling Intelligent Life-Cycle Health Management for Industry Internet of Things (IIOT) - Proceedings of the 12th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring -
Duration: 1 Jan 2019 → …

Conference

ConferenceStructural Health Monitoring 2019: Enabling Intelligent Life-Cycle Health Management for Industry Internet of Things (IIOT) - Proceedings of the 12th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring
Period1/01/19 → …

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  • Cite this

    Mascareñas, D., Liao, A., Morales, J., Berl, F., Hailey, S., Milligan, J., Vigil, D., Smith, A., & Van Wrinkle, R. (2019). Unmanned vehicles for lightning protection system inspection and maintenance. 2087-2092. Paper presented at Structural Health Monitoring 2019: Enabling Intelligent Life-Cycle Health Management for Industry Internet of Things (IIOT) - Proceedings of the 12th International Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring, .