Type of Job/Services Completed: 10MW Solar Panel Inspection using Optical and Thermal Payloads on a DJI M210 Drone

The project was located in South India.

About the Client

Pace Power Systems Pvt Ltd - LogoPace Power Systems Pvt Ltd was established in 2003 and has since grown into a leading OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) supplier, O&M Service provider for Towercos & Opcos and Solar Solutions. From its inception, PACE has been placed on a firm pedestal on products and technology, to be able to help Operators & Tower Companies who are in need of solutions on Energy. PACE has introduced its Solar powered solutions to Towercos & OpCos and has been a pioneer in developing solutions utilizing green energy. It currently boasts presence in Southeast Asia and Africa.

Background of the Project

Pace Power Systems is a fast-growing IPP (Independent Power Producer) in South India, and continues to develop several hundred megawatts of thermal energy assets in collaboration with the IREDA (Indian Renewable Energy Development Authority). As a pilot project, Pace Power entrusted ABJ to perform drone-based inspection of a 10 MW installation. The assigned brief of the project? For ABJ to find out whatever it could!

ABJ Drones’ Approach

ABJ Drones commissioned a skilled drone pilot along with a DJI M210 drone mounted with an optical plus thermal payload. A series of two flights over 40 minutes enabled the pilot to gather the requisite raw data, which was then processed in three days and submitted to Pace Power. The findings of this inspection were incredible, and rapidly actionable for asset managers.

Despite the installation being relatively new, 105 modules with hotspots were discovered, along with nine modules with bypass diode activation, and six with bypass diode failure. In addition to identifying problems, ABJ also suggested some easy-to-implement rectifications. Furthermore, a marked-up site diagram was prepared, with identified all defects by panel number using an easy-to-follow legend.

Our Outcome

While a conventional inspection of the installation would have required about 14 hours to complete, ABJ’s inspection was completed in under one hour, at just 40% the cost attributable to a regular inspection. Furthermore, the accuracy level of the results, at 99.85%, is unparalleled in the industry, and ABJ’s report enabled Pace Power Systems to undertake the necessary repairs, majority of which were covered under OEM warranty. As such, ABJ was able to achieve its mission of accurate results, delivered fast, with expert review, at a fraction of the conventional cost.