Power Tether Products and Technology for Commercial Drones

OEM Drone Tether Technology Incorporated into Mobile ISR & Sensor Platform

Blue Vigil's OEM power tether kit provides the AVEM with power, secure communication and data transfer By Mike Ball / 29 Jul 2022

USV with tethered drone

Blue Vigil has confirmed that its OEM drone tether technology has been integrated into a mobile tethered UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) platform designed for persistent ISR (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) and communication relays.

AVEM, created by Planck Aerosystems, is designed for rapid deployment from moving vehicles and vessels on land or at sea, and launches, ascends, hovers, descends, and lands at a push of a button. The tether system provided by Blue Vigil delivers power for long-term operations and allows for secure communication and data transfer.

The fully integrated AVEM system consists of multiple subcomponents including a military-grade unmanned aircraft, autonomous control engine (ACE), tether module, DECK ground segment, operator control unit, tether, and payloads. Combined, they create a high-performance, fully autonomous UAS that can be quickly mounted onto vehicles and operated on the move.

AVEM has broad use cases across industries, but it has unique advantages for ISR operations, communications relay, and situational awareness. Equipped with imaging sensors, it supports persistent ISR missions while repositioning, on the move or at sea. Power and data transferred over the tether allow for RF-silent signatures for low detectability and GPS-optional flight enables operation in contested environments. AVEM can also elevate a radio relay payload to extend the reach of a communication network while on the move or at sea. The system can be deployed on trucks, small boats, unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) and unmanned surface vehicles (USVs).

AVEM’s tether system, designed by Blue Vigil, provides power to the aircraft for unlimited flight time. It includes a fiber optic cable for secure, high bandwidth data transmission. The tether is lightweight, yet strong enough to constrain the aircraft during takeoff and landing. It attaches to the DECK ground segment and the aircraft tether module (ATM) mounted onto the bottom of the aircraft. The ATM is an active tether management system that provides the interface for both power and data.

Blue Vigil’s OEM power tether kit allows integrators such as Planck, as well as manufacturers, to package the company’s core tether management and power delivery technology into a custom drone/tether platform that can be vehicle-mounted (ground/sea), man-portable or both. The OEM kit consists of four core modules that are independently packaged, allowing for flexibility in enclosure design and the ability to accommodate a weather rating up to IP55. The core elements include the tether (wet side), power module (dry side), motor unit and air module (aircraft power conversion).

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Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact