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Big grant aims for drones to do turbine maintenance

Drones do not suffer from a fear of heights and they are more than willing to work outside of regular business hours. As such, drones could be the best candidates for inspecting wind turbines, according to a new project, which will develop the technology with help from Danish public funding.

Denmark wants to be a world leader when it comes to drones, according to government ambitions. One specific example could prove to be in an area where Denmark already takes the lead, namely wind power. In the future, drones  could replace manual inspections of wind turbine blades. As least if Denmark's Innovation Fund Denmark, Denmark's Technical University, Aalborg University, and several Danish companies get their way.

With an investment of DKK 14 million (EUR 1.9 million) from the Innovation Fund and a total budget of DKK 26 million, the parties behind the drone project, named Darwin, will develop a drone-based system over the next three years for the inspections of wind turbines. The aim of the project is to reduce expenses for service checks by 70 percent.

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