AiDash has announced new capabilities for identifying dangerous trees in its Intelligent Vegetation Management System (IVMS). The innovation, developed and field-validated with AiDash customers and staff arborists, uses satellite technology and AI to rapidly inspect every tree in an entire network – indoors and outdoors rights of way (ROW) – to find individual, unhealthy trees intended to cause outages at customers.
Typically, hazardous trees cause over 70% of system outages, yet only 30% of vegetation management budgets are spent on hazardous tree programs due to the amount of effort in manual inspections and the “needle in a haystack” nature of the problem. Due to the impact of climate change, drought and pest infestations, trees are dying at a faster rate, which further compounds the problem of dangerous trees.
“Traditional inspections just won’t work anymore,” said Abhishek Singh, co-founder and CEO of AiDash. “They’re slow and expensive, and when a tree shows it’s unhealthy, it’s too late. Satellite technology is the only solution available that can identify unhealthy trees so quickly and accurately. LiDAR lacks spectral depth and picks up only a few wavelengths, but satellites can see a broad spectrum of wavelengths and provide electromagnetic depth, yielding unique insights into vegetation health. With satellites, you can quickly find diseased trees throughout your network and reduce your outages by 20-30%. »
Now, utility arborists can go directly to specific areas to understand and mitigate dangerous trees and their causes. Using the IVMS mobile app on a phone or tablet, an inspector can report a tree with photos and detailed information. This task can then be assigned as part of a planned move or managed ad hoc by a team. Utilities can also leverage savings from their IVMS cycle compensation program by applying these funds to priority areas of their at-risk tree program, resulting in significant reliability improvements.
“Dangerous trees are the classic needle in the haystack, but they’re much more dangerous,” said David James, Wildfire Resilience Plan Manager, Avista. “Now AiDash will allow us to detect them quickly and efficiently so that we can mitigate this risk and improve the reliability of our system.”
AiDash officially launched its Smart Vegetation Management System with Dangerous Tree Identification last week at the National Trees and Utilities Conference (September 20-22) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin AiDash was an event sponsor and technology evangelist , Jordan Jozak, moderated a panel discussion on satellite-based vegetation management.