GE, ORE Catapult program supports innovations with crawlers and surveillance
Eleven-I and Innvotek have demonstrated innovation in offshore wind maintenance through GE Renewable Energy and ORE Catapult’s “Stay Ashore” research and development program, and the Robotics Challenge sub-project carried out through the Innovation Exchange (OWiX) of the Offshore Wind Innovation Hub in partnership with KTN. .
Innvotek, an innovation consultancy, was able to further develop a crawler robot, which uses magnetic technology to attach itself to a turbogenerator and autonomously detect the presence of certain features in order to carry out vital maintenance work.
Eleven-I used the project to develop its Structural Health Monitoring System, which uses state-of-the-art software and data analysis to monitor blade health throughout its life.
Both companies were able to take full advantage of the technical support and testing capabilities offered by working directly with ORE Catapult and GE Renewable Energy, leading to valuable learnings for both, which they can now add to future deployment of their technology.
“It has been fantastic to work with these two innovative UK companies, alongside our colleagues at GE Renewable Energy, on the Stay Ashore programme,” says Graham Smith, Senior Portfolio Manager at ORE Catapult. “The progression this has enabled for each of their solutions will go a long way to improving several aspects of future offshore wind development, while continuing to develop the opportunities for more UK companies in similar areas of expertise.”
“The ‘Stay Ashore’ program continues to bring improvements to the offshore wind industry,” commented Vincent Schellings, chief technology officer at GE Renewable Energy Offshore Wind. “These innovative solutions aim to improve operational efficiency and safety. This will be vital as the offshore wind industry grows to meet global decarbonization goals. We are proud to base this research in the UK, supporting the UK in its aim to reach 50 GW of installed offshore wind capacity by 2030.”
“Working with ORE Catapult has allowed us to leverage their fantastic collective knowledge and facilities to accelerate the development and demonstration of our wind turbine blade monitoring system, which has now been adopted by a number of OEMs and manufacturers. ‘operators,” says Bill Slatter, CEO of Eleven-I.
“The team is very pleased with the successful testing of the robot,” adds Michael Corsar, Chief Technology Officer at Innvotek. “It was so exciting to be part of the Stay Ashore program, which has been a vital part of advancing our technology, and we strongly believe it will reduce the time people have to spend working in harsh conditions. a perfect job for a robotic solution like this.