New approaches to smart vegetation management

What do environmental concerns, arborist costs, and storms all have in common?

For one, they’re all major considerations for utilities, especially when it comes to vegetation management. And they’re all on the rise.

Vegetation management (VM) is a cost- and labor-intensive undertaking, even in ideal conditions. Inspecting thousands of miles of lines is no easy task. Neither is finding and clearing vegetation when it poses threats to your transmission and distribution lines.

But doing VM right (and doing it well) is a necessity for all utilities who want to provide electricity safely and reliably to their customers — and keep in line with federal and state regulations.

Since VM is such a serious, costly undertaking, it’s important that utilities optimize their vegetation management programs as much as possible.

That’s exactly what Bradley Smith, AiDash VP of sales operations and demand generation, spoke about in a webinar hosted by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). Bradley joined this webinar along with Dr. Ashley Bennett, an environmental research scientist for the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and Ryan Yanek, manager of distribution planning and asset management for PPL Electric Utilities.

During this webinar, “Smart Vegetation Management: New Approaches to an Age-Old Problem,” Bradley and his fellow speakers discussed different ways utilities could create and execute vegetation management programs intelligently. They touched on several approaches, including:

  • Implementing new technologies, such as satellite imagery, LiDAR, and artificial intelligence (AI).
  • Digitizing VM workflows with asset management and monitoring software.
  • Focusing on natural, environmentally-conscious methods of vegetation control, such as planting low-growing native species of grasses and plants.

To learn more about the new approaches to smart vegetation management discussed by the panel, you can watch the full webinar below.

AiDash and smart vegetation management

By combining data from satellite imagery with AI-powered analysis, AiDash Intelligent Vegetation Management System (IVMS) helps utilities trim the right trees at the right time. When utilities can detect hazard trees and other risks in near real-time through satellite scans, they can prioritize these risk-prone areas of their lines. Effectively reducing and eliminating risks can help utilities increase reliability and decrease O&M costs.

Learn how AiDash IVMS can help your utility more safely provide electricity at a reduced cost by optimizing your VM program.