Aerones has renewed its ISO certifications in cooperation with Kiwa (AS Inspecta Latvia). The certification guarantees you trust, continuity, security, dedication, and compliance with our robots operating on your wind turbine blades. The scope of certificates - Wind turbine generator maintenance using robotic technology; Robotic system development, manufacturing, sales and service.
Winter is supposed to be the best season for wind power, but winter also comes with a problem: freezing weather which causes icing on wind turbine blades. Even light icing can produce enough surface roughness on wind turbine blades to reduce their aerodynamic efficiency, which reduces the amount of power they can produce. Frequent severe icing can cut a wind farm’s annual energy production by over 20% (1), costing the industry hundreds of millions of dollars.
Aerones lightning protection system measurement robotic method is accredited and certified in cooperation with TÜV NORD GROUP, and is in conjunction with BWE "Wiederkehrende Prüfung" of DiBt.
Our unique robotic system can be used for safety and insurance purposes saving costs and decreasing downtime of wind turbines.
Aerones team successfully participated in one of Europe's largest wind energy trade fairs Husum Wind 2021, showcasing 4 robots of the company's fleet. Participants showed a large interest in the Lightning Protection System testing robot, our improved Leading Edge surface preparation robot, Internal Inspection crawler robot, and the brand new Visual Inspection No Downtime robotic system.
The interest shown by some of the most significant wind turbine manufacturers has served as proof that Aerones' tools can increase the market's maintenance and inspection performance. We look forward to meeting the needs of wind park managers worldwide.
Wind energy is one of the largest contributors to renewable energy generation, where the recent demand has led to growth in use as well as in physical size. Simply put, wind turbines are getting taller and capturing wind through a larger blade swept area.
Leading edge protection tapes (3M™ or other type) protect against erosion and abrasion, helping to reduce downtime and the costs associated with leading edge painting and maintenance. But these materials become defective after some time, which leads to loss in efficiency and protection of the Leading Edge. And the old remains of the tapes are still difficult to remove if performed manually.
In this event, European Maritime and Fisheries Fund projects will present how circularity by design contributes to increasing the environmental sustainability and the competitiveness of the offshore renewable energy sector. Aerones Co-Founder, Mr. Dainis Kruze, will be one of the speakers. He will present Aerones robotic technology: our solution for offshore wind turbine blade maintenance works.
Organizers: Climate Infrastructure Environment Executive Agency (CINEA) and the European Commission Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE)
Time: Tuesday, 22 June, 2021 10:45-13:00 UTC+3
Both as inventors focusing on industry and as service providers, we feel committed to stopping wind turbine failure rates from rising. Recent data from our own inspections show that more than 25% of wind turbine blades have been moderately, and in some cases — severely impacted by lightning strikes. Aerones has gained a better understanding of how our clients are likely to be affected by natural disasters and how timely countermeasures — inspections can put a matter of potential risk into a safe level of avoidable incident. Our data comes from Aerones gained experience and conducted projects in various continents and different weather conditions, on various types of turbines from more than 1,100 inspected blades.
We have been continuing the development of our fleet of robotic solutions to deliver a full spectrum of tools for optimal WTG blade inspection. In addition to our existing robotic system, we have designed a dedicated crawler for high-quality internal wind turbine inspections, allowing us to expand reach and coverage existing methodology for internal inspections can offer.
Due to crawler's small size, we are capable to perform internal inspections on the majority of blades on active wind turbines - where it was previously impossible via manual approach. Additionally, our crawler-bot is equipped with powerful lights and HD 360-degree view cameras able to capture the full internal area of turbine blade. We believe, with crawler we are addressing the need of the industry – to truly have a full inspection, leaving no small damages unnoticed. Oftentimes the internal condition of the blade can be completely different from the external condition, leading to overlooked significant damages of the blades that can result in high-cost repairs (and unearned profits), if not treated in a timely manner.
Aerones engineering is simply clever. Crocodile clips on steroids.
To perform blade lightning protection system troubleshooting we have to be able
to remotely mount a fixing that creates contact with the LPS system metallic
tip. This solution allows the Megger cable to be connected to the tip of the
blade. Then the other lead of the Megger cable with duplex probes is delivered
to the following down conductor receptor.
In the past, rope access crews would use the typical crocodile clips but it would
create a short and buzz the technician with an electric shock. Also, the crocodile
clips would tend to slip off the point of contact and decrease the precision
of the measurement due to poor contact. Aerones have engineered something that
rope access crews are now seeing useful on their daily tasks too.
We call it the sock mount. Any other name suggestions?
Advancing robotic LPS testing
Aerones have been working hard on the robotic technology for LPS conductivity measurements to improve quality and speed when compared to a typical LPS system inspection. We implement a proven and robust delivery system (our winches) and a robotic arm that carries the duplex Megger probes. Additionally, Aerones robotic arm has multiple cameras mounted near the probe to visually guide the probes to make contact with the receptor and capture close visual inspection images of the receptors.
advanced the technology far enough to proudly tell that our LPS
tests are the best on the market and provides the capabilities for
inspections not available by any other
Aerones has secured a grant from the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) to fund 2.5M EUR in R&D to develop offshore capabilities of its established onshore wind turbine blade inspection, maintenance, and repair solution.
The grant will be used to adapt the already established onshore Aerones technology to be used in offshore applications. The innovative robotized access and maintenance system developed by Aerones is expected to result in reductions of crew transfer vessel fuel costs and emissions, reduce overall project execution times, and extend the service life of the turbine blades while supporting local coastal infrastructure.
The project will be implemented over 3 years in close cooperation with a consortium partner SIA Saunora (Latvia) and field trial partners including offshore wind industry leader GE Renewable Energy and Tethys Energy Services (United Kingdom). The objective of the project is to develop a remotely operated maintenance system for offshore wind turbines. The development will require a significant amount of R&D to adapt Aerones technologies for the sea:
For onshore turbines, Aerones has already developed a computer controllable winch access system, robotic manipulation arms with various specific tools, and overall control and quality assurance video monitoring suite. Using the onshore solution, Aerones has already serviced over 200 turbines over the last 3 months alone. Aerones technology has been widely recognized and approved vendor status has been awarded to service GE, Vestas, Nordex and Siemens Gamesa wind turbines.
“At Aerones we believe that this opportunity will enable us to build on core strengths and expand the services to the offshore wind. With the aid of the funding, we will significantly increase the engineering team’s capacity and run several at-sea trials to bring the existing onshore solution to a viable commercialized offshore service,” stated Janis Putrams, CEO of Aerones.
Innovative business solutions in the maritime industry are believed to be the new sunrise sector. Building on innovations in wind turbine maintenance and inspection and adapting them to offshore applications supports local coastal infrastructure, creating jobs, and making offshore wind more affordable and sustainable. Aerones is at the forefront of this industry transformation through making a tangible contribution to how offshore wind turbines are being serviced.
“With the contribution of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund of the European Union”
Novel remote wind turbine blade maintenance technique for
offshore wind farms wins accolades in an important competition
organised by GE Renewable Energy and renewable energy research
A demonstration from Tethys Energy Services (Tethys) and Aerones won through in a blade robotics innovation competition launched by GE Renewable Energy, the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult and KTN.
Aerones, are proud to announce that Aerones, as well as our
daughter company, the service provider, Aerones Nordic, recently
became ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 certified
The two internationally recognized standards that set out the requirements for internal quality management systems, will bring added value to all verticals served by Aerones, including OEMs, wind farm owners as well as other service companies in the wind industry, which we partner with.
Right now most conductivity tests for wind turbine (WTG) blades are performed via Rope Access: only the blade is measured, from the root of the blade to the receptors. When deploying Aerones robotic technology to do LPS measurements we use long wires to complete a full circuit test in order to check whether, in case of a lightning strike, the charge will actually be properly grounded.
Throughout this season, we have done the Lightning Protection System (LPS) inspections already for more than 5,000 receptors and set a pace of conducting LPS inspections for 3 to 4 wind turbines per day using only one Aerones service unit. This is an unprecedented speed of LPS inspections for the industry.