GDI to deploy Skygauge drones for thickness measurements

Global Drone Inspection (GDI) reports that it has added new Skygauge drone technology to support its marine survey services, which will be used to take ultrasonic thickness measurements of large uncoated and painted surfaces, such as corrugated bulkheads and web frames.The Skygauge drone uses thrust-vectoring systems to maintain stable flight while in motion. The drone can pivot to any point in 360 degrees around it, including directly above and below, allowing the units to inspect any asset regardless of its shape.The drone aligns itself by applying an equal cup pressure of 20 Nm to the surface. Artificial aids based on LIDAR assist the operator in estimating alignment and movement to the next measurement position. The system’s software provides continuous measurements and delivers an indication of the accuracy of the readings as well as a final reading.The technology has been demonstrated, with certain limitations on the areas that can be reached, during tests with four classification societies.“GDI has the equipment and the skills needed to take valuable measurements efficiently and safely in conjunction with approved TM (Thickness Measurement) suppliers,” said David Knukkel, GDI’s CEO.“Although GDI is not an approved TM-supplier, certain classification societies are open to innovative technology and partnerships between approved RIT (remote inspection techniques) and TM suppliers.” The company notes that working in conjunction with approved TM suppliers does not change the process of liability, validation of measurements, and reporting, with GDI considering the drone as an additional tool that wirelessly supports the work of the TM engineer.The TM engineer remains responsible for validating measurements by executing proper calibration and judging accuracy by looking at the full A-scan. The TM engineer will report the values as usual based on the different formats required by each individual classification society. 

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