IKT starts TA project at its Large Test Facility

Practical research for the Transnational Access project “Assessment of Inspection tools for Rising Mains (AIR)” in IKT´s Large Test Facility (IKT LTF) officially started on April 24, 2023. A complex test setup in IKT´s Large Test Facility (IKT LTF) consisting of pipes and defects is going to be used for the scientific assessment of inspection tools for rising mains. The project was initiated by RIONED, the umbrella organisation for urban water management in the Netherlands. The Pipebots inspection system is now the first to be used in the investigations. This system is being developed collaboratively by several British universities and is constantly being optimised.

Alex Towlson from the University of Bristol has stayed at IKT in Germany for a few days to carry out the inspection with the Pipebots inspection system. Alex is working on this as part of his PhD-thesis “Robotic inspection of buried pipelines”. Pipebots is a prototype inspection system working with an array of air coupled ultrasonic sensors.

The defects in the pipes of the test setup, which are not known to the users of the inspection tools, have to be located and identified.  The inspection results serve as a basis for evaluating the performance of the inspection systems. Inspection systems from other providers will be used in the rig in the coming weeks. The results of the investigations will provide manufacturers and researchers with scientifically sound information about the actual performance and application limits of their inspection techniques. Based on this, the existing techniques may be optimised and, if necessary, new techniques can be developed. For the pipebots inspection system, the results will be very beneficial for further refinement and development.

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