Skip to main content

Flight of the Drones

cache_1327273202 Here come the French:

Three unmanned helicopters are set to be shipped to Japan from France shortly so that Japanese authorities can use them to monitor the unfolding crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the developer of the drones said Wednesday.

Helipse said it developed the helicopters equipped with radiation sensors, infrared thermometers and cameras in response to an order from Japanese authorities last Thursday.

The helicopters can maneuver automatically and fly for 30-60 minutes at a time, it said.

That’s the whole story, so we paid a visit over to Helipse to see if we could learn more. Well, it hasn’t updated its news page since last November and its English page was apparently translated by Google, so nothing specific. But I suspect they are sending over their HE300. The company describes it like this:

Le modèle HE300 est appareil de grande taille avec une capacité d'emport de charge élevée, supérieure à 20 kg.

Il a été dessiné pour répondre à des missions particulières telles que ; l'emport de camera professionnelle, camera thermique refroidie, capteurs diverses de mesure, topographie, emport de réservoir pour la pulvérisation etc. , ainsi que des missions de grandes distances.

En effet, grâce à sa capacité de charge utile et à l'adjonction de réservoirs supplémentaires, la durée des vols peut atteindre 2 heures, et son rayon d'action plus de 10 Kms, (suivant le type de transmission radio embarquée).

Which may well translate as (my attempt):

The HE300 model has a large-load carrying capacity of greater than 20 kg.

It was designed to run specific kinds of missions, including those requiring items such as a photographic camera, a cooled thermal camera, various types of sensors for measuring and/or surveying work or a tank for spraying [whatever needs spraying, assumedly], etc.

It can also cover great distances. Indeed, thanks to its capacity and ability to carry additional fuel tanks, it has a potential flight duration of up to 2 hours and can be operated at a distance of over 10 km (depending on the type of radio included).

That lines up with the Kyodo story pretty well. Good for Helipse – we’ve seen some other companies that have supplied their products for use at Fukushima – and have been impressed that they’ve been so low key about doing so. Well, if they don’t want to promote themselves, we have no problems doing a bit of it for them. Angels on earth, surely.

The Helipse HE300.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…

Innovation Fuels the Nuclear Legacy: Southern Nuclear Employees Share Their Stories

Blake Bolt and Sharimar Colon are excited about nuclear energy. Each works at Southern Nuclear Co. and sees firsthand how their ingenuity powers the nation’s largest supply of clean energy. For Powered by Our People, they shared their stories of advocacy, innovation in the workplace and efforts to promote efficiency. Their passion for nuclear energy casts a bright future for the industry.

Blake Bolt has worked in the nuclear industry for six years and is currently the work week manager at Hatch Nuclear Plant in Georgia. He takes pride in an industry he might one day pass on to his children.

What is your job and why do you enjoy doing it?
As a Work Week Manager at Plant Hatch, my primary responsibility is to ensure nuclear safety and manage the risk associated with work by planning, scheduling, preparing and executing work to maximize the availability and reliability of station equipment and systems. I love my job because it enables me to work directly with every department on the plant…