Inspected up to the blade tip

Gullyver inspection cameras for quality control in blade manufacturing and service

Rotor blades for wind turbines are sensible high-tech products, which have to withstand enormous forces during operation. Therefore it is from highest importance for the manufacturers as well as for the operation company to know and monitor the condition of the blades.

The German association for wind energy (Bundesverband der WindEnergie) requires in their principles for periodic inspection for wind turbines („Grundsätzen für die wiederkehrende Prüfung von Windenergieanlagen“) an inspection of the blade body from inside and outside regarding relevant damages of the surface and the structure. Furthermore the video endoscopic method is explicitly named  as a suitable method. 

In the manufacturing of rotor blades, our systems are already widely used for quality control inspection. The crawler systems Rovver and Rovion turned out as the most suitable systems for this application. Equipped with a high resolution pan-and-tilt camera, this system enables the operator to see  in every angle required. The camera has a strong 10-times optical and a 12-times digital zoom. With this strong zoom, combined with a excellent LED-light, the camera is able to inspect also the last 2-4 meters at the blade tip, where the crawler can’t move anymore.

 

A back eye camera also permits to drive around possible barriers on the way back. Specially developed spacers avoid to get stuck at material like glue in the joint area.

 Totally different conditions in manufacturing and service require a different concept of the complete system. As in manufacturing fast and efficient handling is the main topic and weight and size are not playing an important roll, it is possible to work with an automatic cable reel and the system can be integrated in a practical roll container. Whereas the service system needs to be as small and light as possible in order to lift it up to the generator house in one lift cycle.  To make the system easy manageable we here use a manual cable reel, which goes together with all other components into one single box.

 

  


Vertical Inspection

a variant of the Inside Inspection of the blades is the inspection in a hanging position. The Inspection is done when the blade is in 6 o'clock position and the camera is hanging in the blade. In some situation you reach even more parts of the blades then with the crawler. Furthermore it is possible to inspect from inside and outside in the same time.

 System zur vertikalen Rotorblattinspektion

Rotorblattinspektion – das Kameramodul im Detail