At A Glance 

  • Requirement to remotely monitor construction of 215 MW plant
  • Drone imagery analytics and mobile app collaboration utilized
  • Team monitoring progress down to last post on the ground from HQ in another country

Problem

A large Europe based solar power developer with a strong presence in north America was initiating development of a 215 MW plant in north texas, US which was being built by a local EPC company. The client builds and manages utility scale plants with over 1+GW of development completed across Europe.

The challenge was to accurately monitor plant construction progress on civil, electrical and mechanical parameters . The mandate was to follow stringent internal guidelines of how the ‘as-built’ should match the design specifications. The client wanted to have a granular view of

Tracking requirements

  • Civil construction (miles of roads/ fencing/ cabling/ trenches)
  • Tracker installations (and inverter structures, control rooms)
  • Inventory (modules pallets/other)

Field control requirements

  • Geo-tagged issue tracking on site
  • Provide punch lists for execution
  • Inventory location on site

Solution

Sensehawk initially set up a digital model of the proposed plant. With the CAD files and design sitemaps, the plant was set up in the system with all components numbered and labelled according to the building plans. Teams for design, quality, construction management and inventory were also created in the platform. The plant model was displayed on an interactive, map based interface that could be loaded on the mobile or the web application.

The client uses their own drone to do weekly scans of the construction site. The visual drone imagery was uploaded to the software which auto-flagged the construction site features including civil works such as roads, drains, fences. It also highlighted the status of the plant elements such as piles, trackers, modules. The exercise was done over a 7 month period when the plant was under construction. Below are some images of the plant at close to completion stage.

Image

Benefits

The client project team could track construction progress down to individual components on the ground from their project office 5,000 miles away in another country. Automated progress reports made MIS and reporting a breeze.

Reports included:

  1. Tracker installation progress
  2. Civil works progress
  3. Miles of fencing done, roads laid
  4. Miles of Cable trench excavation
  5. Construction progress of inverter structures, control rooms
  6. Inventory tracking
  7. Inventory staging monitoring
  8. Identification and counts of pallets

The client also used the mobile application which had the digital twin of the plant to:

  1. Navigate around the site
  2. Create tickets (using visual walk-bys on-site and drone imagery)
  3. Track inventory location using the barcode scanning app
  4. Creating Punch Lists

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