Jul 2017
Electricity Distribution
Overhead Line Assessments Using Panoramic Images
Jul 2017
Jan 2018
UK Power Networks, Eastern Power Networks and South Eastern Power Networks
Chino Atako
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Network Innovation Allowance
Overhead Lines, Asset Management, Maintenance & Inspection and Condition Monitoring
This project will apply to all (~700,000) wood pole overhead line (OHL) supports and spans in EPN and SPN and will provide an indication of:

  • How many of the overhead line supports are visible via Street View;

  • The quality of the images (e.g. poles obscured by vegetation, how recent the records are etc.); and

  • Deliver a methodology for routine inspections, using Google Street View images and 360 degree images captured by a third party, as part of business-as-usual activities following the completion of the project.

The objectives of the project are to:

  •  Verify that the there is sufficient “coverage” of UK Power Networks’ operational areas by Google Street View to be able to carry out OHL assessments remotely;
  • Verify that the images from Google Street View images are of sufficient quality to carry out condition assessments remotely;
  • Develop a replicable methodology to assess overhead lines using Google Street View images;
  • To demonstrate that this approach is a cost-effective approach when compared to other traditional methods for overhead line assessments (foot patrols, helicopter patrols etc.); and
  • To demonstrate that 360 degree images can be captured on site in a cost effective way.
The following will be considered when assessing whether the project has been successful:

  • Greater than 40% coverage of UK Power Networks’ Overhead line assets using Google Street View (Note: this is entirely dependent on Google street view images being available for UK Power Network’s pole positions);

  • Of the pole supports and spans identifiable through Google Street View, greater than 50% of images have been taken within the last six years;

  • Good image quality of 360 degree images captured on site by a third party; and

  • Development of a map interface tool to enable user(s) to carry out OHL assessments from a desktop