Drone technology to increase safety in the energy sector
Swift Technical, the services division of Airswift, the global workforce solutions provider for the energy, process and infrastructure sectors, has announced a partnership with Drone Pilot. Austin-based Drone Pilot provides both outsourced and insourced unmanned air, ground, and maritime robotics services to the oil and gas industry.
By partnering with Drone Pilot, Swift Technical can now support clients with unmanned inspection and detection services, and generally support processes where it is unsafe or inefficient to send humans. In oil and gas, this could range from pipeline or flare stack inspection to detecting size and toxicity in cases of a spill to reduce manual handling and increase safety. For its part, Drone Pilot gains exposure to Airswift’s global energy client base, helping to fulfil its growth ambitions.
Through the partnership, the companies aim to bring safety, efficiency and security to the energy process and infrastructure sectors, focusing on three core pillars of inspection, detection and training. Drone Pilot differs from other drone operating companies in that it can support companies with either outsourced or insourced drone initiatives by providing bespoke 100-hour training programs.
Jake Macey, Operations Manager at Swift Technical commented: “We were drawn to Drone Pilot as a partner for two key reasons. One was their commitment to both external services and training, reflecting the flexibility that we pride ourselves on delivering to clients. The other was the company’s heritage in military and public safety applications. We work in highly regulated, safety-critical sectors where rigour, good-practice and discipline are essential – we knew Drone Pilot would deliver that.”
Within the oil and gas sector, for example, drone inspection services will include corrosion and leakage in confined and hazardous spaces, reducing costs by up to 60 per cent, whilst improving safety and minimising risk. The technology can detect issues such as spill sizes and locations and is able to asses asset management in critical and harsh environments, which can drastically minimise human error and liability.
Drone Pilot training courses are built to encapsulate the key principles of flight and challenges in the energy industry with bespoke scenarios. This is delivered from its state-of-the-art Austin facility, which is able to mimic real life scenarios in both an indoor and outdoor setting. The course includes 100 hours of drone pilot training including advanced skills trainings and night missions.
John Buell, President at Drone Pilot said: “The energy industry is undergoing a technological transformation and is always receptive to innovations that can increase safety and efficiency. It is therefore a pleasure to team with Airswift to add unmanned aerial, ground and maritime training and services to the portfolio they provide within the energy industry. As Airswift is well-known for providing the people and workforce solutions behind that transformation, through our partnership, it can connect its clients with the right technologies too.”
As part of Airswift, Swift Technical delivers solutions to the global energy, power and infrastructure markets through supplying a variety of speciality services including engineering, dimensional control, construction, reliability and project management.