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Drone flight to monitor Snam’s pipeline network

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World Pipelines,

Snam has begun to experiment for the first time with remotely piloted long-distance civil drone flights to monitor the natural gas transmission network.

The drone flight took place on a section of the pipeline in Emilia-Romagna (Italy), between Alfonsine and San Bonifacio in the provinces of Ravenna and Ferrara. The drone flew a distance of around 50 km roundtrip, and it was the first long-distance civil drone flight to be conducted in BVLOS (Beyond Visual Line Of Sight) mode in Italy.

The exercise aimed to assess how drones can be used to help Snam technicians monitor gas infrastructure more efficiently and help improve the accessibility of monitoring in remote areas such as rivers and mountainous regions. Using drones also allows data and images to be captured in real-time. Snam will continue to test new drone flights in the coming months.

Snam’s CEO, Marco Alverà, said: “The use of drones and satellites to monitor networks and systems is a key part of Snam’s digital transformation, which also relies on artificial intelligence and cloud technology to make Italian infrastructure more intelligent, sustainable and secure, to the benefit of local communities and our country. A focus on technology and new energy transition initiatives is at the core of the Snamtec project, which will invest €850 million by 2022, establishing Snam as an energy company of the future.”

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