Fereshteh Abedini, Mahdi Bahaghighat, Misak S’hoyan

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Wind Turbine Towers (WTTs) are the main structures of wind farms. They are costly devices that must be thoroughly inspected according to maintenance plans. Today, existence of machine vision techniques along with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) enable fast, easy, and intelligent visual inspection of the structures. Our work is aimed towards developing a visionbased system to perform Nondestructive tests (NDTs) for wind turbines using UAVs. In order to navigate the flying machine toward the wind turbine tower and reliably land on it, the exact position of the wind turbine and its tower must be detected. We employ several strong computer vision approaches such as Scale-Invariant Feature Transform (SIFT), Speeded Up Robust Features (SURF), Features from Accelerated Segment Test (FAST), Brute-Force, Fast Library for Approximate Nearest Neighbors (FLANN) to detect the WTT. Then, in order to increase the reliability of the system, we apply the ResNet, MobileNet, ShuffleNet, EffNet, and SqueezeNet pre-trained classifiers in order to verify whether a detected object is indeed a turbine tower or not. This intelligent monitoring system has auto navigation ability and can be used for future goals including intelligent fault diagnosis and maintenance purposes. The simulation results show the accuracy of the proposed model are 89.4% in WTT detection and 97.74% in verification (classification) problems.


Machine Vision, Object Detection, Vision Inspection, Wind Turbine, Deep Learning.

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