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SmartGuard: An autonomous robotic system for inspecting substation equipment



Substation equipment inspection is necessary for the power industry. With the dramatic increase in the number of substations, unmanned substations are required by the industry. This paper presents SmartGuard, a completely autonomous robotic system that can inspect substation equipment. SmartGuard consists of a robot and a data center. The robot can patrol in a substation and inspect equipment with a visible-light camera and an infrared thermograph. The acquired images and temperature information are analyzed by the data center. The data center can fuse infrared and visible-light images and find abnormal hot spots and abnormal appearance. There are 13 SmartGuards currently serving 12 substations, some of which have been working for more than 2 years. The feedback from the field shows that SmartGuard significantly improves the efficiency and reliability of substation inspection. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.