Pirate, the development of an autonomous gas distribution system inspection robot

C. Pulles, E. Dertien, H.J. van de Pol, R. Nispeling

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    A consortium of four companies is developing an autonomous inspection system for small diameter, low pressure gas distribution mains. Such a system could eventually replace the current practice of leak survey and improve the assessment of the quality of the mains, being able to investigate the mains from the inside and very closely. A complete system consisting of small robotic platforms, docking stations for battery recharging and data communication, and entrance locks is envisioned. The logistics of such a system seem feasible, although the technological challenge is daunting. Besides the development cost the other major parameter determining the cost of the system is the allowed maximum distance between docking stations. Preliminary analysis of the business case show that a robotic platform driving at a speed of 0.2 km/h and an availability of 50% would earn 160 000 € annually, being the value of its inspection results. This justifies a serious attempt for further evaluation of the vision.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationInternational Gas Union Research Conference 2008
    Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of a meeting held 8-10 October 2008, Paris, France
    PublisherCurran Associates Inc.
    Number of pages13
    ISBN (Print)978-1-61567-870-9
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2008
    EventInternational Gas Union Research Conference, IGRC 2008 - La Cité des sciences et de l'industrie, La Villette, Paris, France
    Duration: 8 Oct 200810 Oct 2008


    ConferenceInternational Gas Union Research Conference, IGRC 2008
    Abbreviated titleIGRC
    CityLa Villette, Paris


    • Robot
    • IR-78218
    • service robotics
    • CE-Advanced Robotics
    • EWI-19794
    • Pipe inspection


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