Denmark is to invest DKK64 million (US$9.6 million) in research into potential applications of drones or unmanned aerials systems (UAS), including their potential application for inspection of offshore wind turbines. As highlighted previously by OWJ drones are seen as having a number of potential applications in the offshore wind industry, such as inspecting turbines.
The project is being led by the University of Southern Denmark (SDU), which will be funded to the tune of DKK30 million for the ‘UAS-ability’ project. A total of five universities will participate in the project that aims to unite the nation's forces in drone research. With SDU as a powerhouse, the UAS-ability will unite research in drone technology from the University of Aalborg, the University of Aarhus, the Technical University of Denmark and the University of Copenhagen.
“We have created a strong research platform where the best conditions exist for world class drone research. Together we will find solutions for the technical problems that need to be solved before drones can become the commercial success that everybody expects,” said Kasper Hallenborg, head of department at the Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller Institute at SDU.
“Drones have an enormous potential for strengthening Denmark’s productivity and the basis for growth in the entire country. That potential must be developed and it is a great pleasure to be able to fund Denmark’s first national research infrastructure for drone technology,” said Denmark’s minister for education and research Ulla Tørnæs. The grant from the Ministry of Higher Education and Science means that drone researchers at the Danish universities can acquire the equipment that will facilitate development of the future's drones.
“We will establish two new drone laboratories,” said Brad Beach at SDU’s drone research centre, “including a test laboratory equipped with simulators where researchers can test drones in different environments, such as inspecting offshore wind turbines.”