In a case study put together by the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, as part of the Direct Research Portfolio Report 2018 to 2019, it details how drones are being integrated into its work.
It detailed how as UAVs have undergone rapid development over the last few years, the NDA is looking to maximise their value for nuclear decommissioning.
It outlined the challenge to accelerate the uptake UAVs across the NDA group to add the benefit of safer, faster and potentially cheaper access to external and internal spaces for a wide range of functions, including building inspections, radiation monitoring, photography, security
Across the NDA group, a variety of different drones have already been flown to carry out a range of different tasks.
They have inspected pipelines, tall chimneys, roofs and radioactive facilities and have collected high-quality visual images, measured the temperature of vessels, found areas of radioactivity and accurately mapped legacy facilities.
The NDA says the information has eliminated working at heights and radiation dose to operators. Compared to traditional manual methods, there have been savings in both time and money.
Production of the report brought together users to share their experience, hear about the latest developments in technology and legislation and identify further opportunities for the use of drones.
The final report has also been used to highlight the use of drones to the wider NDA group. Demand for drones is growing every week as new groups recognise they can be used on nuclear sites and that they can solve their problems.