A Scotland-based drone surveying firm is making British rail service safer from above.
Cyberhawk Innovations recently concluded a drone aerial inspection and survey over the Rugby rail station in Warwickshire, England – the first internal and external structural inspection for the British rail network.
The company deployed sensor-arrayed drones to capture images of the station’s supporting superstructure and roof to locate possible damage or wear. In the past, the rail network depended on ground cameras wielded by workers on high-altitude scaffolding, creating precarious safety risks.
“Cyberhawk’s UAVs allowed for a quick and safe audit of the stations roof, mitigated the need for personnel to work at height and importantly, permitted railway lines to stay open to the public throughout operations,” a Cyberhawk press release stated.
“We were awarded a framework agreement with Network Rail in 2014, which was one of the many reasons we were chosen to undertake project, along with our Congested Areas Operating Safety Case (CAOSC) permission to fly UAVs in urban areas and in close proximity to structures, vehicles and people,” Cyberhawk commercial director Philip Buchan.
“Over the past two years we have grown our portfolio in the rail sector, due to the vast benefits on offer through the use of our UAV technology. We have carried out multiple inspection and survey projects across the UK, and this project is testament to our ability to deliver more complex and challenging infrastructure inspection projects.”
In January, the company received a nomination for the UK’s Offshore Achievement Awards, in the Safety Innovations category with results to be announced in March. Cyberhawk developed drone technology for inspection and survey to improve offshore safety in the oil and gas sector.
“Cyberhawk conducted the very first [drone] industrial inspection in 2010 and since then, has built up an unrivalled track record in oil and gas,” Buchan said. “Following the launch of a new wind turbine inspection service last year, we hope to see this success replicated within the renewables sector.”
To date, the company has completed more than 200 live flare inspections for companies such as Shell, BP, Chevron, Total and Exxon.
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