Pipeline networks traverse modern societies' national territories and can be located in areas difficult to access, such as river crossings, making maintenance logistically challenging and potentially dangerous for field personnel. In order to resolve this problem, Skipper NDT has developed an unmanned aerial system (UAS) for magnetic mapping which allows, firstly, quick data acquisition with less than 30 minutes of flight time per 100 m of river inspection. Secondly, an automated survey without putting field personnel at safety risk.
The performance was tested under real field conditions with the collaboration of the incumbent French Gas operator. This paper is based on 3 cases from 160 to 220 m river crossings with a maximum depth of 12 m from water surface. The result shows a strong correlation with existing information while enhancing data quality and reliability. In particular, a 3D model of the river crossing features using QGIS software was made.