Tethered Drone

24 October 2016

The tethered drone is the natural progression of the commercial-use drone. Given the recent technological progression of the last ten years, the drone has gone from being used for military purposes to that of the hobby-enthusiast and commercial businesses. The drone itself allows a lot of functions and purposes such as surveying land, structural Inspections, security, broadcasting and the basic photography to name but a few. This is a big draw for industry and companies much like 3 Axis-UAS want to achieve. The market has expanded and thus the needs of the market have grown too. People are in need of developments to the commercial uses of the drone itself.

But what exactly is a tethered drone?

Simply put it is a drone that is tethered to the ground. Think of it much like a balloon.

One of the major issues with free-flying drone is the battery life. Powered typically by the LIPO battery that can provided battery life of around up to half-an-hour of flight, a tethered drone is able to be connected via battery pack supplying power for longer term flight and thus longer flying jobs can be achieved. Ideally this can allow jobs that currently have to be done over the course of a day or two at most to be done much quicker as well as open up the job range a drone can perform, especially for tasks that need to be done over long periods of time.

Tethered Drone

Tethered Drone- Picture courtesy of Southampton University

Another factor that is currently plaguing the industry as a whole is the concerns of public the law. The Law itself has been seen to be adapted and altered accordingly with the development of drone technology which has allowed such advancements into the tethered drone system. However, the concern of the public is an important thing to look into. Drones have to remain in the eyesight of the operator for the sake of safety of the public. Do tethered drones help with getting around this? We at 3 Axis-UAS believe that this development in the UAV industry allows for more focus into lines of work such as broadcasting or inspection of sites since the tether allows the operator to keep an eye on where the drone is regardless of the weather, much how someone would fly a kite or balloon if it was anchored. The tether does place a limit on the range a drone can reach as well as stabilizing it from forces like the wind making it much more reliable since one of the biggest concerns of free-flying drones is the lack of control. As it stands right now the tethered drone permits safer flight for longer durations with more control, everything that we as businesses want to promote in our work.

As seen from Drone Aviation’s WATT launch of commercial tethered drones, there has been a sudden surge of new possibilities thanks to the tethered drone. Drones that are able to be powered directly and for long periods of time. In addition, they can be more stable thanks to the tethering wire. This alone permits the tethered drone to achieve high altitudes. Overall, we can tell that this development in the market and technologically for the drone, that the industry has taken a step forward and possibilities granted by this development is something to watch.

If you need to know more about Tethered systems that can be integrated in to your business, contact 3 Axis-UAS today.

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‘3 Axis-UAS really helped us out on a project and it was a pleasure working with them . Their enthusiasm, expertise and knowledge really added value to our output’

Director Geospatial Solutions