Percepto drones to inspect Florida Power & Light facilities

April 29, 2022  - By
Image: Percepto

Image: Percepto

Florida Power & Light to deploy 13 autonomous drones, with plans for hundreds more in coming years to monitor statewide power grid

UAV company Percepto will deploy autonomous drones to monitor Florida power substations and distribution grids across the state.

Florida Power & Light (FPL) will deploy drone-in-a-box technology statewide, which Percepto claims is the largest commercial autonomous drone project in the world.

Image: Florida Public Service Commission

FPL serves the northeast and southern half of Florida. (Image: Florida Public Service Commission)

Serving more than 11 million people in Florida, FPL uses Percepto’s Autonomous Inspection and Monitoring (AIM) solution powered by drones to perform routine infrastructure inspection and monitoring.

In the first phase of the project, 13 drones will take flight in the West Palm Beach area this year, with long-term plans to field hundreds of Percepto over the next five years.

The drone-in-a-box solution was the first to pass Level 5 hurricane testing at a wind speed of up to 155 mph, making it suitable for minimizing incident response times and power outages in Florida.

Percepto has served FPL since 2018, working closely to develop optimized drone monitoring solutions and build consensus and compliance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations. The FAA issued a nationwide waiver for FPL to fly Percepto drones for surveillance and inspection purposes at sites owned and serviced by FPL.

As part of its ongoing work with the FAA, Percepto is a member of the Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) that has provided its regulatory recommendations to fully incorporate highly automated BVLOS operations flights in the national airspace.

The drones in operation across the state will be coordinated on a single platform through Percepto’s AIM solution. With Percepto AIM, drones can be operated remotely to ensure that they work together in sync, providing maximum coverage at the sites they monitor.

About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.