Brian Lawrence

CS Energy pilots virtual plant inspections

06 Nov 2020

CS Energy is trialling wearable technology to enable our engineers to remotely assess the condition of our power plant equipment.

Head of Optimisation Brian Lawrence has been wearing a hands-free, helmet mounted camera to provide engineers with a ‘Brian’s eye view’ during some plant inspections.

“COVID-19 travel restrictions have meant that our engineers can’t always get to site to view plant and equipment, so a digital solution was needed,” Brian said.

“Working with our IT team, we plan to relay live footage from the headset back to asset engineers in Brisbane or other locations when they are unable to be onsite.

“It will be very useful for internal inspections of the plant. Because the headset is intrinsically safe, it can be used in potentially hazardous areas such as the generator and hydrogen plant.

“If the trial is successful, we also plan to use it as a training tool for our graduates and apprentices.”

Virtual tech in air cooled condenser
Above – Brian wears the headset inside the air-cooled condenser at Kogan Creek Power Station.

Real wear virtual tech wearer\
Above: The above photo is the view as seen by the wearer through the RealWear camera screen of the helmet, in this case, an electric motor drive.

CS Energy is trialling RealWear’s head mounted devices. Some mining companies have adopted similar technology on their mine sites to enable city-based staff to remotely assist technicians in the field.

Brian said it was exciting to be trialling new technology to help perform tasks in a more efficient manner.

“We’ve had great support from the business to use technology to our advantage. This trial shows that CS Energy has a high appetite for innovation.

“COVID-19 has changed the way we work and this tool could actually help us manage that better into the future, rather than going back to the way we were doing things before.”