Smart maintenance and inspection of linear assets: An Industry 4.0 approach
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Linear assets have linear properties, for instance, similar underlying geometry and characteristics, over a distance. They show specific patterns of continuous inherent deteriorations and failures. Therefore, remedial inspection and maintenance actions will be similar along the length of a linear asset, but because as the asset is distributed over a large area, the execution costs are greater. Autonomous robots, for instance, unmanned aerial vehicles, pipe inspection gauges, and remotely operated vehicles, are used in different industrial settings in an ad-hoc manner for inspection and maintenance. Autonomous robots can be programmed for repetitive and specific tasks; this is useful for the inspection and maintenance of linear assets. This paper reviews the challenges of maintaining the linear assets, focusing on inspections. It also provides a conceptual framework for the use of autonomous inspection and maintenance practices for linear assets to reduce maintenance costs, human ...