Assessing risks for the use of drones for wind turbine inspections

Athanasios Kolios*

*Corresponding author for this work

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This paper presents a comprehensive risk assessment framework for integrating drones into wind turbine inspections, addressing technical, operational, human factors, environmental, and regulatory risks. Utilizing a multidimensional approach based on Failure Modes Effects and Criticality Analysis (FMECA), the study evaluates potential risks in drone-assisted wind turbine inspections, considering various factors like communication reliability, sensor functionality, battery performance, and environmental impacts. The research emphasizes the importance of systematic risk identification, evaluation, and prioritization in enhancing the safety and reliability of drone operations in the renewable energy sector. The framework’s practical application is demonstrated through a case study involving real-world offshore wind farms, engaging industry experts and employing structured data collection methods. The study identifies, assesses, and offers mitigation strategies for critical risks, underlining the significant potential of drones in optimizing maintenance processes and advancing sustainable energy production. Future research directions include refining risk assessment methodologies, advancing drone technology, and fostering international collaboration for broader adoption of drone-based inspections in renewable energy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Science of Making Torque from Wind (TORQUE 2024): Dynamics, control, and monitoring
Number of pages10
PublisherIOP Publishing
Publication date2024
Article number032030
Publication statusPublished - 2024
EventThe Science of Making Torque from Wind (TORQUE 2024) - Florence, Italy
Duration: 29 May 202431 May 2024


ConferenceThe Science of Making Torque from Wind (TORQUE 2024)
SeriesJournal of Physics: Conference Series


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