Automatisierte Befliegung von Windenergieanlagen mit einem Multikopter zu Inspektionszwecken

  • Automated inspection of wind turbines with a multicopter for inspection purposes

Schäfer, Björn Erwin; Abel, Dirk (Thesis advisor); Moormann, Dieter (Thesis advisor)

Aachen : RWTH Aachen University (2020, 2021)
Dissertation / PhD Thesis

Dissertation, Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aachen, 2020


The inspection of buildings and industrial facilities is a promising field of application for mobile robots. Multicopters are unmanned aircraft systems which can operate increasingly in an automated or even autonomous mode due to powerful sensor systems and innovative control algorithms. Thereby the systematic, safe and time-efficient inspection of otherwise hardly accessible sections of buildings or facilities is possible. In this work the automated flight along a wind turbine for inspection purposes is examined. A comprehensive concept including sensor equipment and control of a multicopter is presented. The concept’s main aspects are mapping of a wind turbine, path planning, path following and collision avoidance for a multicopter. A 2D laser scanner and a highly precise GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) receiver are essential hardware components. Validation of the concept was performed at first in simulation using ROS (abbr. for Robot Operating System) and Matlab/Simulink. Subsequently a multicopter prototype is presented that has been used for experimental validation under realistic operation conditions.