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Industrial infrastructure

Infracorr and Trendspek: transforming an industry

Assessing towering structures for defects and planning maintenance is a necessity for asset managers who want to maximise value. For decades, the skilled team at Infracorr has been one of Australia’s most trusted experts in inspections and managing repair of complex corrosion and deterioration.

In 2020, Infracorr’s Managing Director, Ian Godson discovered Trendspek’s Precision Asset Intelligence software, introducing it to his industry, and transforming the future of durability solutions.

About the project

How did you first learn about Trendspek?

At Infracorr, we are invested in innovation. Traditionally, we used booms and rope access to investigate the structures condition and then started to use drones to enhance visuals in very high or difficult to access locations. We could really see the advantage of doing inspection with reduced use of booms and rope access – we’d increase safety, but also capture more, faster.

We came across the Trendspek software by chance in 2020 and we immediately identified the opportunity it presented. By capturing the structure as a “digital twin” from a drone high-res photo capture we were able to inspect and detail all visible defects, from a computer screen, as if we had unlimited access to all areas of the structure.

We initially tried the system on a concrete water tower, with the Trendspek team assisting to load our drone capture into the model and training our staff to complete the defect tagging and full use of the system. We were very impressed and with help from Trendspek, we continued to capture larger and more complex structures including chimney stacks, silos, dams, industrial structures and buildings.

Services

Precision Reality Twins (PRT), Data Acquisition, Reporting and Project Management

Project in numbers

Under 2 days

Capture time

Versus the traditional capture time of 12 weeks

100%

Coverage

Versus 10% of actual asset coverage

7500

Data points

Versus the traditional data points of only up to 50

High fidelity

3D interactive model output

Versus the traditional output of 2D PDF of images

80%

Cost saving

Versus the traditional manual inspection costs

Low risk

Safety Risk

Versus the traditional high risk manual rope inspection

“With Trendspek, we can now identity and tag every visible defect and know exactly where it is. We can measure it – know how long it is, how big it is. It is a game-changer, I’m so excited about what we can do!”

“With Trendspek, we can now identity and tag every visible defect and know exactly where it is. We can measure it – know how long it is, how big it is. It is a game-changer, I’m so excited about what we can do!”

How did Trendspek change your inspections and reports?

In the investigation of large structures that have started to deteriorate, we need to document all visible defects and physically investigate and test to confirm the cause of the deterioration. With very large structures that have difficult-to-reach areas, the time and cost to access and test is very high, so we commonly take representative samples from a small proportion of the structure and use that to estimate the overall repair requirement. Photographs from the ground level or drone video helped to estimate the repair quantities but still these estimates were approximate at best.

Once we have the digital twin Trendspek model and the defects marked and tagged, we can focus our further investigation of the structure to specific defects, allowing far reduced levels of testing from traditional access methods.

What has been your biggest project using Trendspek?

We are investigating the condition of the silos at Glebe Island – the ones you see when you drive towards Victoria Road in Sydney. When we started to look into the possibility of using Trendspek for this project, we learned a drone capture had already taken place in 2019. We have since completed another capture in early 2022, which enables us to compare the structure as it is now, and its condition in 2019.

For the silos, it’s mainly cracks in the concrete we are marking up – we can trace them, mark their length, locations, note if they have been repaired before or not – everything we need to fully document the defects. Any other defects such as coating defects, spalling concrete or corrosion staining can be tagged with their size determined accurately. We can export that information to an excel or any format or use the reporting and annotations on the Trendspek model.

We can also share the model with contractors so they can accurately price everything as they know exactly where defects are and their size. We are effectively using the Trendspek system to manage the repair process and maintenance process – it’s far more efficient than ever before.

Infracorr’s specialists are Australia’s leading experts with decades of experience, and pride ourselves on the accuracy of our investigations and repair estimates. Unfortunately, the industry is known for repair estimates that can be quite inaccurate, which can result in blowouts of repair quantities with significant increase in costs and time for repairs.

With Trendspek, our level of accuracy improves even more, and we can help our clients plan budgets more accurately, and the repair contractors quote more precisely.

How does Trendspek compare in terms of time and cost?

The simple answer is, it doesn’t… in the sense that, in the past we would not have ever closely surveyed 100% of structures like the silos, due to the time and cost of inspections from ropes or access booms. With Trendspek, we get the drone capture in a couple of days, with the complete tagging of defects done on our computer screens in a few weeks. Using the marked-up model, we investigate in detail selected defects using traditional access and our skilled engineers.

We’ve just partnered with Trendspek to work with one of the country’s leading universities to capture and mark up more than 100 of their buildings. It’s difficult to even imagine doing these inspections the traditional way. Now, if they want to look in detail at building 37, they simply zoom on in immediately and they can see all the details of visible defects or dimensions, as opposed to sifting through files, reports and photos.

In terms of cost, on average it’s around 10-20% of the cost of traditional investigations– for full capture of the buildings, the Trendspek Interactive Precision Reality Twin down to millimetre, the Trendspek platform to analyse, mark up, annotate, and our work to investigate, assess and report.

It’s not just a matter of being able to see details that we were never able to see before, it’s also capturing structures you just wouldn’t have tried to access fully due to the cost and time to do so.

“There’s just no comparison – you just wouldn’t tag defects to 100% of the buildings without Trendspek, it would take too long and cost too much.”

“There’s just no comparison – you just wouldn’t tag defects to 100% of the buildings without Trendspek, it would take too long and cost too much.”

What’s next for Trendspek and Infracorr?

The opportunities are endless! Trendspek had an energy group in Europe approach them, and as a result, they needed a partner to mark up the defects on a gas plant structure. Without leaving our country, our city or even our desk – we marked up defects on their asset and can now service clients this way, all around the world.

We are also promoting locally, to showcase to our clients, and potential clients, what’s possible. With Trendspek we can see things we never could before, that we would have spent months getting to, and we can control the repair process and cost far more efficiently, benefiting our clients with an enhanced service.

Better. From every angle.

At Trendspek, we understand the importance of assets, because to us, our clients are our most valuable assets. We have worked in close partnership with some of the world’s biggest asset management companies, delivering our service, their way.

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