Heath Consultants Incorporated (Heath) in collaboration with Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI), is adapting the industry leading laser-based Remote Methane Leak Detector (RMLD®) for mounting on the InstantEye®, PSI's two ft wide quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicle featuring highly advanced autonomy and all weather operation. This technology combination, known as the RMLD® Sentry, will implement self directed flight patterns to continuously monitor, locate, and quantify volumetric leak rates of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, from natural gas production sites.
The RMLD Sentry measures methane by sending an infrared laser light beam downwards from the vehicle and detecting some of the laser light reflected back from the ground. It relies on attenuation of the laser beam by the methane in the laser path at certain wavelengths, as compared to little attenuation at other wavelengths. By flying circular patterns around a methane leak, the RMLD Sentry is able to deduce the leak rate and home-in on the leak location.
Development and evaluation of RMLD Sentry is sponsored by the US Department of Energy's Advanced Research Project Agency (ARPA-e). The three-year ARPA-E program will test prototype units at selected field sites.
Adapted from press release by Francesca Brindle
Read the article online at: https://www.hydrocarbonengineering.com/the-environment/24032016/psi-and-health-release-new-unmanned-aerial-sensor-for-methane-leak-detection-2855/