DroneShield Expands into Tethered Counterdrone Space


DroneShield Ltd is expanding its counterdrone capabilities through tethered aerial vehicles via a partnership with Zenith AeroTech.

Zenith AeroTech is a US-based developer of heavy-lift tethered aerial vehicles (“TAVs”). As part of the integration partnership, Zenith AeroTech deploys DroneShield’s DroneSentry-C2TM command-and-control ecosystem into its own family of TAVs, along with a miniaturised radar, to counter drone or drone swarm attacks.

Partnership between the two companies enables better, longer range drone detection, combined with countermeasures.

“By putting a detection capability on a TAV, which typically flies at 400 feet, you get better range than if you were to have these systems on a pole or ground vehicle,” said Kutlay Kaya, CEO of Zenith Aerotech. “Also, your alerts will be more accurate because, at elevation, you’ve eliminated clutter.”

Zenith AeroTech offers three different TAV platforms: Hexa, Quad 8, and Quadro. In contrast to standard drones, these three TAVs can stay aloft for hours—and even days—due to Zenith’s Ground Power-Tether Management System, which converts 120- or 240-volt AC power from a generator (or another source) into high-voltage DC, powering both platform and payload. The platforms themselves can carry 5-15kg of payload.

In addition to a capable drone-detection solution, Zenith AeroTech will be offering (where lawful) DroneShield’s soft kill measures, to be used by personnel on the ground. “Because we detect inbound drones from further away, we give personnel on the ground more time to jam them,” Kaya said.

Image: Zenith AeroTech US Government customer demo

There are many potential markets for TAVs with counterdrone capabilities. The military could use them to protect forward operating bases; civilian security managers might have them fly over sensitive facilities; and law enforcement could use them to safeguard well-attended public events.

“We are already working with a couple of federal agencies, and we anticipate broader adoption of this solution,” Kaya said.

DroneShield’s CEO Oleg Vornik has commented, “DroneShield’s deployment with Zenith takes our cutting edge command-and-control ecosystem capabilities into the tethered drone domain, opening a new range of applications for our Government end-users.”


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