Industry 4.0 – A revolution! Time to rethink, replan and redesign by Pieter De Villiers identifies 8 technology platforms of development that mostly drive Industry 4.0. Most research papers place drones in a separate category because of the prominent role these machines play, despite drones being a specific form of robotic capabilities. It is predicted that drones will become an important working machine in almost every industry.
Methane is a potent greenhouse gas – when it is released into the atmosphere, it has a much higher immediate global warming impact than carbon dioxide. Before methane leaks can be stopped, the sources must be identified.
Since 2018, the Shell – Avitas team has tested integrated drone based technology to detect methane emissions linked to oil and gas production. The team has conducted more than 500 test flights during which they assessed the capability and reliability of drones, drone mounted sensors, calibrated AI enabled software amongst other things. The technology has provided a valuable source of insight. The team is confident that drones have huge potential benefits in a broad range of aspects for the organisation. They are currently focused on methane detection, multi mission surveillance enabling gas leak detection, corrosion detection, abnormal heat signatures, presence of wildlife, road conditions and more.
Combining drones with advanced analytics enables automated detection. More work is however required to harness the full spectrum of capabilities and operationalise them.