Learn about the “magic balls” installed by drones that optimize electrical networks

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Innovation in electrical networks

Very soon the American electrical grid and high-voltage power lines will be monitored by innovative devices known as “magic balls” of Norwegian origin, as Heimdall Power is introducing a unique technology using sphere-shaped sensors, which has been shown to increase the capacity of power lines by 30% in Europe.

Most notably, early adopters of these sensors are already reporting financial savings, due to transmission lines being used more efficiently in their power grids .

This summer… we were able to disconnect one of the two parallel lines and ‘overload’ the other because we had full temperature control ,” said Trond Are Bjørnvold, director of Arva’s Network Development department in Norway in a press release. by Heimdall.

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How do these balls work on power lines?

These spheres are responsible for measuring various parameters such as line temperature, current, among other key metrics. Additionally, Heimdall Power has established a collaboration with the Swiss company Meteomatics , specialized in meteorological data. The joint analysis aims to help grid operators optimize line capacity , enabling greater transmission of renewable energy to the grid.

This is a unique approach to ensuring more efficient use of our energy system ,” say the visionaries involved in the project.

By combining our weather insights with Heimdall Power, we give companies a look at the capabilities of their power lines in real time, something most power grid companies haven’t had access to before. We look forward to continuing our work together in the United States.”said Meteomatics North America CEO Paul Walsh.

About the US power grid

In the United States, there is an extensive electrical grid that requires monitoring: approximately 160,000 miles of high-voltage lines and millions of miles of low-voltage lines , according to data from the Environmental Protection Agency. The spherical sensors, known as Neurons, have dimensions similar to those of a soccer ball. These “magic balls” are installed by drones in less than two minutes .


There are both physical and virtual Neurons, and according to Heimdall, the technology operates more efficiently when both types of sensors work together. The implementation of the technology includes the use of cloud software to monitor the US power grid and quickly provide analysis and forecasts.

This combination provides unparalleled quality at scale, making true wide-area monitoring possible ,” the company stated.

Likewise, the sensors have the ability to operate in a wide range of temperatures, from -40 degrees to 248 degrees Fahrenheit and are currently being used by 30 utility companies in 16 countries.

If the technology succeeds in improving transmission capacity in the US, it could help strengthen electrical stability, a crucial concern for grid operators amid the possibility of increases in blackouts in the coming years due to extreme weather conditions and moments of high demand.

Improving transmission lines can keep power flowing more efficiently. Heimdall says the combination of advanced weather information, power line data and machine learning are part of the solution his experts bring to the grid. So far, customers have expressed positive feedback from the field.

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Source: thecooldown.com

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