Sharper Shape – a Finland- and California-based provider of automated, drone-based asset inspections – and Indian transmission company Sterlite Power have announced a strategic partnership to provide drone inspection services for utility assets in India.
As part of the cooperation, Sterlite Power will make a minority investment into Sharper Shape to foster Indian market growth and continued technology development. Earlier this year, the two signed a partnership agreement in the presence of the Prime Minister of Finland, Juha Sipilä, in Mumbai.
Sterlite Power and Sharper Shape are currently awaiting approvals from India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation for large-scale, long-distance drone flights for the inspections.
In addition to improving the reliability, resilience and safety of the Sterlite Power transmission lines, the partnership aims to provide services for other utilities in India, which has a power transmission network of more than 1 million circuit kilometers (and is undergoing double-digit growth annually), says Sharper Shape, which is part of the EEI Sharper Utility partnership, a U.S. industry collaboration aimed at demonstrating and developing commercial long-distance drone flights for electric companies.