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The first industrial inspection in a Spanish refinery through the use of an unmanned aircraft

November 2nd 2016

The company La Linea Vertical and CATEC successfully developed this new milestone for aeronautics in Spain and for the application of this type of technology in new areas in the civil sector

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La Linea Vertical, a company specializing in works at heights, has accomplished one of the first industrial inspections of refinery torches carried out with an unmanned aircraft in Spain, with the collaboration of CATEC. The inspection took place in the petrochemical plant of CEPSA in San Roque (Cadiz), in the Algeciras bay and in Gibraltar.

For the execution of these works, the express authorization from the Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency (AESA) was necessary, along with other special permits because it is a forbidden airspace, and also a coordination and security protocol with the Algeciras heliport and the San Pablo International Airport of Seville.

La Linea Vertical was in charge of the inspection of the refinery torches, while CATEC was responsible for obtaining the flight permits with AESA, thanks to its experience in this type of operations and capacity in technical consultancy with unmanned aircrafts. CATEC was responsible for RPAS tuning system used during inspection, while its technicians performed test flights in CEPSA facilities.

With the success of this new industrial application, it is demonstrated interesting possibilities and commercial application of UAS in different sectors, like petrochemicals, energy, agriculture, mining, etc. CATEC is reinforced as a pioneer centre in Spain and Europe in the research and application of these new technologies in different areas.

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