Solar panels being inspected by a drone

Solar Farm Inspection Maximize energy production and minimize maintenance costs by detecting energy malfunctions faster, safer and more efficiently

Inspection is key to a high return on investment

Solar panels are a big investment. One single defective cell can impact the energy output of your solar panel site, resulting in the loss of energy and money. Drones help you find these defects quickly and easily. Engineers With Drones can inspect large areas in a fraction of the time of traditional walking capture methods. The captured high-resolution imagery and thermal data provide actionable insight, enabling you to optimize the energy efficiency of your solar assets and optimise the return on your investment.

A row of solar panels on a solar farm as seen from overhead
Locate Irregularities

Locate Irregularities

Drones equipped with thermal imaging cameras allow you to accurately assess the condition of a solar farm. Infrared photographs can be used to detect extreme temperature differences that can locate otherwise unseen issues, such as concealed moisture damage and heat leakage.

A thermal image of solar panels on a solar farm
Remote Monitoring

Remote Monitoring

The use of drone 3D modelling technologies gives you the opportunity to inspect a digital twin of a solar farm from the comfort of your office. This detailed replica can be inspected at a minute level, allowing you to make a record of any areas that are in need of attention. Issues such as poorly executed repairs, general damage and other potential weaknesses can be shared with your employees, suppliers and other shareholders at the click of a button.

A close up image of solar panels
Greater Detail

Greater Detail

In comparison to traditional solar farm inspections, drones provide a higher degree of detail. High-definition cameras and cutting-edge zoom lenses pick up the tiny details that may otherwise go unnoticed, such as missing connections, rust, or damaged insulators, while at the same time keeping personnel safe and on the ground.

A partially completed solar farm under construction
Details from a Safe Distance

Details from a Safe Distance

Our drones can capture the minute details of any object, without having to touch or even get close to it. Objects that once had to be shut down, climbed and traversed can now be inspected and monitored in real time more quickly, and with zero risk to personnel.

A solar farm battery storage station
Reduce/negate Asset Downtime

Reduce/negate Asset Downtime

Drone inspections do not need scaffolding, equipment and other structures to be erected. This leads to less downtime and higher productivity. Complying with appropriate health and safety regulations without sacrificing production time, allows for significant financial savings.

Why choose us?

Qualified engineers

As licensed engineers, we also provide the expertise, understanding, and knowledge necessary to carry out a thorough inspection, with deliverables to match. Our skilled engineers are at the ready.

IAA certification

The Irish Aviation Authority has awarded Engineers with Drones full approval in accordance with the most recent European-wide EASA regulations.

Latest technology

To ensure that you always get the best possible service and cutting-edge deliverables, we purchase the most up-to-date drone technology as soon as it's available.

Rigorous HSSE standards

The operation of Engineers With Drones is governed by a comprehensive HSSE system. Our guiding principles are to reduce risk through rigorous assessment, and to maintain a high level of staff education and training.

Fully insured

We have 6.5 million in public and product liability insurance, and 13 million in employers' liability insurance. Engineers with Drones are fully insured to fly wherever you need.

Based in Ireland

As we're situated in Ireland, we can respond to your needs quickly, with zero travel complications.

First-class deliverables

As seasoned engineers in the field, we are aware of the trouble that shoddy reports and deliverables can create. For this reason, we provide you with exactly what you require.

Quick turnaround times

Thanks to our fast turnaround times, your entire project can be completed in a fraction of the time of traditional methods, without any compromise in the quality of your deliverables.

4K and VR Footage

In addition to quadrupling the resolution of an HD camera, 4K also gives you quicker frame rates, incredible contrast variations, and expanded colours. VR video takes the level of immersion and clarity to the next level.

Why use a drone for your solar farm inspection?

Quick turnaround

We understand that you need answers fast. We can deliver a plain-English report with clear-cut conclusions in days. Then, you can take the steps you need to and get back to doing what you do best.

Safety

The safety of your personnel and our own is paramount, and we place it at the forefront of our company culture. Ask us about our HSSE systems and practices.

No scaffolding or ropes

Drone technology is cheaper, safer and more reliable than traditional methods such as scaffolding, cherry-pickers and ropes. It's also quicker and less labour intensive. We will bring everything we need and be out of your way that same day.

Greater Accuracy

Drones capture high-quality, impartial information that gives you an exact assessment on the status and needs of your asset.

No risk to your assets

Our equipment won't touch or even go close to your assets. Our high-resolution cameras use optical zoom to give extreme close-up views while staying a safe distance away.

Detect hidden problems

We use cutting-edge technologies to detect problems that would otherwise be invisible. These include ultra-HD photography/video, LiDAR and thermal imaging.

Cost-efficiency

Drone inspections take up less of your manhours and resources than traditional inspections, giving you a faster and more budget-friendly return on your investment.

Real-time consulting

Sometimes the brief can change even in real-time. If need be, you can be stood there right next to the drone operator, directing them as the situation develops.

Keeping your operations running smoothly

Over time, solar panels can develop defects that cause a significant drop in energy output or even start a fire. However, these can be fixed if detected in time. That is why solar panel inspection and maintenance are critical to keeping your operation running efficiently, no matter the scale. Traditional methods of inspection are time-consuming and inefficient. A large team is needed to inspect each solar panel one by one. Solar farms can be big and solar panels can be quite high up, making it difficult and dangerous to inspect them manually and capture data from sufficient angles. Using drones allows us to capture more detailed and accurate data in a fraction of the time, reducing risk and cost. High-end cameras, digital zoom lenses, and thermal imaging can get you a closer view of the panels.

A drone inspection a solar farm in Ireland
Get a closer look without the hassle, delays or risk

More efficient data collection

Using the very latest technology, Engineers with Drones can compile reports on the efficiency and status of all the elements, with everybody involved remaining safely on the ground. Detecting anomalies earlier enables you to make more informed decisions. Faulty panels can be replaced by manufacturers during their warranty period, saving money and time by avoiding costly repairs in the future. Focus on the right fix, at the right time, without having to make several trips to the solar panel.

Biological growth on a solar array as seen by a drone

We can help identify issues such as:

  • Manufacturing defects
  • Cell failure and degradation
  • Cracks
  • Soiling
  • Faulty inter-connectors
  • Defective bypass diodes
  • Delamination
  • Temporary shadowing

An aerial photo of a partially completed solar farm

Advantages of using drones equipped with thermal imaging camera:

  • Identify anomalies invisible to the naked eye
  • Fast and easy scan of solar panels during normal operations
  • Cover large area in a short amount of time
  • Geotagging - locate faulty modules easily
  • Detect defects and get them repaired quickly

The solar industry is constantly expanding. Solar panels can be expected to last 20 years. That means that maintenance and quality assurance are fundamental. A failure-free operation guarantees efficient power production, the long life of solar panels, and high ROI.

How does it work?

Reach out and tell us your idea

We take emails, phone calls, messages, everything! If you are unsure of what's possible we are happy to advise, the most important thing is to get in touch. We would be delighted to answer any questions you may have.

Start at the end

With drones, it's best to begin where you want to end up. What sort of deliverable would you like when it's all finished? If you are not sure then we can advise. We can look at what you would like and work backwards from there.

Scope of work and set a price

Once we have agreed on what is to be done, the scope of work is set and a price is agreed upon. We feel it is vital that everyone knows what they are getting and what they are paying for it. There should be no confusion.

Permits and other paperwork

Once we have confirmation you are happy to proceed, we start the ball rolling. We organise things like RAMS, site permits, Air Traffic Control clearance and much more. Basically, we generate everything needed to turn up on-site with all our ducks in a row.

Field Operations

Next, we do the work on site. We have the gear, we have the know-how, so now it's time to get the job done. This can sometimes be affected by the weather, but for the most part, we get the job done on the date specified.

Post Processing

This is where we take what we generated in the field and turn it into a final deliverable for you. This can be anything from the raw data itself, to fully processed Orthophotos, condition reports, CAD line work or thermal imagery.

Handover

The final step is the handover of the deliverables. We tend to use a cloud-based service, so you can access your data anywhere. We can also tie into your existing systems if that is more convenient.

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Our Services Not just photos from the sky

Spoiler alert: we're not drone pilots. We're professional engineers who have learned to fly drones really well. If you're looking for a photo of your garden or a swooshing shot of your wedding reception, we're probably not the right people for you. But if you need an engineer's eyes and brain, combined with next-generation UAV technology and ready-to-roll deliverables, then you've come to the right place.

Drone Photography

Capture high-quality imagery of your assets from never before seen vantage points.

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Thermal Imaging

Detect abnormalities within your assets that are otherwise invisible to the naked eye.

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3D LIDAR Surveys

Record incredibly detailed elevation data to aid in ultra-precise measurements and calculations.

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Photogrammetry

Capture real-world locations and assets digitally, for quicker and more cost-efficient inspections.

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What technology do we use for solar farm inspections?

We purchase the latest drones as they come on the market to ensure you are getting the highest quality service from us at all times. Here is a quick look at what we would be most likely to use for a typical drone solar farm inspection.

Our equipment
DJI MatriceM300 RTK M300 RTK by DJI

Our flagship drone: The M300 RTK by DJI is the premier enterprise-level inspection drone on the market. With a flight time of up to 55 minutes, lots of built-in redundancy, and a host of payloads to choose from, this is our go-to UAV for inspection work. When coupled with the Zenmuse H20T camera, it is capable of safely inspecting high-value assets at a stand-off range.

  • Drone
  • Camera
  • Thermal Imaging
  • Ultra HD
  • Long range
More info
Our equipment
MultinnovStereo 2 Stereo 2 confined space drone by Multinnov

The confined space master: The Stereo 2 by Multinnov is the cutting-edge in confined space and indoor inspection drone technology. Eliminating the need to send personnel into hazardous locations, the Multinnov Stereo 2 can be deployed at a fraction of the cost, and with zero downtime. This is a drone designed from the ground up to get into restrictive and hard-to-reach places.

  • Drone
  • Camera
  • Confined spaces
  • Indoors
More info

People often ask us about...

Our Equipment
Check out our cutting-edge drone equipment and find out what it can do for you.

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IAA Certification
We are fully accredited by the Irish Aviation Authority to the latest European-wide EASA regulations.

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HSSE
Health and safety is a core principle of our business. Find out how we put these principles into practice.

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Fully insured
We hold 13m employers' liability insurance and 6.5m public & product liability insurance.

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Deliverables
Tell us what you need in your inbox, and we will start planning from there. Fully customised.

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Expert engineers
We are experienced engineers with strong technical backgrounds.

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Irish location
Based in Ireland, we'll be with you quickly - ready with all the correct permits.

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The Weather
Find out how we factor the weather into when we provide drone services.

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All assets and industries

Our specialities don't begin and end with solar farm inspections, we perform surveys and inspections across a wide variety of areas. Click on an asset or industry below to find out more.

A UAV performing a drone bridge inspection on an old stone road bridge

Bridge Inspections

Safer, more cost-efficient, with less downtime

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A UAV performing a drone building inspection

Building Inspections

Clearer, faster results without the risks

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A DJI inspection drone inspecting the wall of a coastal pier

Coastal Infrastructure

Monitor coastal assets safely and with more precision

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A confined space drone inspection with a Flyability Elios 2 drone

Confined Space Drone Inspections

Eliminate safety concerns, save costs and reduce downtime

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An image of a construction site taken by a drone performing drones services for construction.

Construction Services

Instant, actionable data with no downtime

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A drone performing a wind turbine inspection

Energy Inspections

Inspect and maintain energy assets without risk or downtime

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An aerial image of an oil refinery taken with a drone conducting a flare stack inspection

Flare Inspections

Safer and more cost-efficient flare (oil and gas) inspections

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A photo of an agricultural field taken with a drone

Forestry and Agricultural

Faster, cheaper and more accurate analysis of land

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An old round martello tower building taken with a drone

Historical Buildings

Analyse historical buildings without risk to people or property

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A photo of a load of industrial chimneys taken with a drone

Industrial Chimneys

Actionable data from a safe distance, with less downtime

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A photo of industrial infrastructure taken with a drone during an inspection

Industrial Inspections

Keep production running while collecting instant critical data

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An image of a damaged building taken by a drone performing drones services for insurance.

Insurance Services

Record and document reliable visuals without safety concerns

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A view of the landscape taken by a drone on a survey

Landscape Inspections

Endless perspectives, without manned aircrafts or structures

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A photo of a cell phone tower taken with a drone

Line of Sight Surveys

Reduced risk, damage to towers and delays

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A photo of a quarry taken with a drone

Mines, Quarry and Landfill

Monitor status and progress without downtime

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A photo of an oil refinery taken with a drone during an inspection

Oil & Gas Inspections

Fast, actionable data without the risks of traditional inspections

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A close-up photo of an electrical pylon taken during a drone inspection

Power Grid Inspections

Instantly usable data via a safer and more cost-effective process

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A photo of a railway tracks and a bridge taken with a drone

Rail Inspections

Eliminates downtime and safety concerns, at a fraction of the cost

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A house next to a river taken by a drone performing drone real estate services

Real Estate Drone Services

Add "Wow Factor" to residential and commercial property listings

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A photo of a river taken with a drone during an inspection

Rivers and Waterways

Safer, more precise data collection at a fraction of the cost

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A drone performing a roof inspection

Roof Inspections

Accurate, safe and instantly actionable data collection

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A photo taken by a drone of rooftop solar panels during an inspection

Rooftop Solar Inspections

Ensure solar panel efficiency from precise data collection

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A photo of a ship being inspected by a drone

Ships and Marine

Safe, precise and instant reports on vessels and infrastructure

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Solar panels being inspected by a drone

Solar Farms

Get actionable data on quality and operational health

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An image of a storm-damaged building and roof taken by a drone during a storm damage inspection.

Storm Damage

Assess damage quickly and with pinpoint accuracy

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A photo of a storage tank being inspected by a drone

Tanks, Silos and Vessel Inspections

Get fast, usable data from a safe distance

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A telecommunications tower being inspected by a drone

Telecommunications

Get critical data on cell and telecommunication infrastructure

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A drone performing an inspection of a communications tower

Tower Inspections

Instantly view complex structures, keeping risks to a minimum

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A photo of a water tower taken by a drone during an inspection

Water Tower Inspections

Critical, pinpoint details with none of the risk

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A drone inspecting a wind turbine in ireland

Wind Turbine Inspections

A more cost- and time-effective way to receive critical data

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