Ultraviolet inspection is a technique used to detect and pinpoint faults caused by electrical partial discharges, corona activity or arcing. This technology is used to identify the first signs of degradation on HV electricity transmission and distribution lines and sub-stations.
Ultraviolet inspection technology is used in addition to infrared thermal imaging; indeed, infrared thermal imaging is not related to voltage but to electrical intensity and is not able to detect faults caused by corona activity and partial discharges on high voltage stations, hence the need for ultraviolet cameras.
The presence of partial discharges or corona activity can cause degradation of polymer insulators, corrode metal fittings on connectors and cause the physical deterioration of components or damage insulating equipment. Ultraviolet inspection provides information in real time on existing partial discharge processes requiring attention or in need of possible corrective action.