Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Powerlink uses lidar to survey Queensland power lines

Steve Rogerson
July 11, 2018

Australian utility Powerlink is to using autonomous-vehicle-style lidar technology to identify maintenance issues and update records on over 3000km of power lines in Queensland.
Thee aerial survey technology will be used for an engineering assessment of its northern and central transmission network. Working with NM Group, the project will use helicopter-based lidar scanning.
Lidar is a pulsed laser system that autonomous vehicles will use to help detect what is around them.
Provided by NM Group, the updated drawings will help Powerlink plan improvement work, manage vegetation risk and plan future power lines. In addition, NM Group will also assist with engineering designs.
Aerial lidar technology will be used to take thousands of accurate measurements providing the high level of detail needed to model Powerlink's network. The work will form an important part of ensuring the safe and reliable power transmission for the utility.
"This is an important project, that will help Powerlink continue to deliver a reliable service to Queenslanders,” said Shane Brunker, technical director of NM Group. “Powerlink has used lidar and geospatial data for many years. I am really pleased they selected NM Group."
Powerlink delivers electricity to almost four million people across its 1700km transmission network and provides network connections for large-scale generators and major industrial users including rail systems, mines and mineral processing facilities.
NM Group is a service provider of asset management, survey and mapping products to the power sector. Applying a range of remote sensing and geospatial technologies, the company offers services from data acquisition through to analytics and web applications for wider access to information.