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Friday, 02 August 2013 09:01

Chopperworx Keeping the Power On

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Operating throughout Africa, the Middle East and the Asian subcontinent, Chopperworx and its fleet of A5350B3 helicopters help keep the power lines maintained and the power supply they provide more reliable.

The services they can provide cover:

  • Route selection/EIA
  • LIDAR surveys
  • Helicopter assisted power line construction with use of air cranes
  • Power line inspection/survey
  • Aerial live line maintenance
  • Insulator washing.

They have invested large amounts of money to provide specialized tools to give the best service to their clients.

The helicopters ability to fly low and slow, or hover and land immediately makes it the best aircraft for power line surveys. The helicopters which have multi-tasking platforms are able to carry out power line patrols allowing any defect on the line to be found easily. The platforms can provide High definition wide angle video, find hotspot anomalies with the Digital Radiometric Infra-Red camera, show corona radiation with the Bi Spectural UV camera and HD videos of selected tower hardware.

The experienced teams of linesmen are able capture all hardware defects.

Energised Power Line Services

Keeping power lines repaired and maintained is a costly business and the most cost effective way is with the helicopters that can provide comprehensive updates on a regular basis. Power line faults and outages cause damage to equipment such as the switchgear and the unserved energy directly affects profitability and ruins the reputation of the utility as being one of uncompromising reliability.

Live line work can be done in two ways named by the industry as:

  • Hot-stick method, which is where direct human contact with live components is avoided. Tools are fastened to fibre glass poles to carry out the work
  • Bare-hand method, the line worker wearing a special conductive suit complete with hood and conductive socks is raised to the electrical potential of the conductor being worked on. This as you can imagine is very hazardous and the line worker must not bridge the gap between the live conductor and any earthed object.

In both these methods helicopters are used to move the line worker and his tools to and from his positions on the lines. Moving on to the lines and from the lines is a very critical part of these kinds of operations. Rigorous rules and guidelines are set in place by the RSA Electrical Code of Practice for High Voltage live line work. Eskom also has specific requirements for contractors doing this kind of work.

Chopperworx and its fleet of helicopters are well versed in all these requirements and procedures.

Construction of Power Lines

This is an area where helicopters can excel as the construction of power lines are more often than not done in areas where no roads have been built or in areas that are inaccessible to land vehicles.

The specialised tools of Chopperworx allow their helicopters to assemble with pin point accuracy structures for the lines, deliver concrete directly to the foundations of the structure, and then string the power line to the structures.

Chopperworx deliver a number of different services as well as the Live line work, Construction of Power Lines and Aerial Surveys and have a reputation of delivering an exceptional service in whatever area they are contracted to take on.

Their helicopters are well maintained by an expert crew and fitted with the latest equipment and technologies which enable them to tackle the simplest or the most technically difficult job to the highest of standards.

Last modified on Friday, 02 August 2013 11:25
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