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$105,000 Awarded to Kearney Startup

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November 28, 2022
$105,000 prototype grant awarded to Snappy Workflow for additional development to prevent power outages and wildfires.

The startup out of Kearney is now preparing to further development & scaling nationally as technology developed during 2022 proved to be successful.

Five Nebraska power districts participated in a pilot program during the summer of 2022 to validate thermal inspection technology being created by the Kearney startup. Utilities have multiple inspection methodologies to maintain their system, but nothing of this scale has been attempted. Snappy Workflow is creating a method to cost effectively enable a system wide patrol in less than a month in search of issues that cause power outages and wildfires.

“Even though Nebraska has one of the most reliable electric grids in the nation, it was impressive to still have Nebraska utilities partner with us to validate this concept, pushing further for even more system reliability and safety,” said CEO & President Dusty Birge.

Thermography technology visualizes temperature, which is invisible to the human eye. When components began to fail, a thermal camera can detect this abnormal condition and utilities can proactively make repairs before the system experiences an outage, or even a wildfire because of component failure.

The pilot program concluded a 1,200 mile patrol inspecting 17,650 poles and yielded nearly 300 thermal anomalies. Ben Cook, CEO of Sparrow Computing who helped Snappy Workflow with the computer vision challenges said, “AI-based computer vision is a powerful tool for automatic line inspection. The more miles we drive, the better it gets. We were able to create an exceptional model that was very effective for this project.”

Snappy Workflow began the concept by securing a Nebraska Department of Economic Development Prototype Grant to put things in motion. They later raised over $1 million dollars from Nebraska investors and completed one of the most successful industry inspections of this kind.

“With this new grant we are awarded, we are actively seeking municipalities and other utilities to join us as we test additional technology in 2023. It’s a pleasure and objective of ours to work with proactive organizations looking to challenge the limits of technology, and pioneer it right here in Nebraska,” said Birge.
Snappy is also actively hiring and information can be found on their website,
Dusty Birge, CEO, (308) 293-1347

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