The Zenith Aerotech series of Tethered Aerial Vehicles (TAVs) are designed to provide situational awareness, persistent surveillance, and force protection wherever needed. The systems can be configured to address specific mission needs, quickly deployed to austere environments, and require only 110V or 220V AC power, depending on the model. Electrical power can be derived from a ground vehicle, free standing generator, or other available source.


Our TAVs carry payloads ranging from 10 to 30 lbs. and typically fly up to 400 feet above ground level. As an option, our systems can be equipped with a fiber optic tether to reduce RF emissions thus reducing the risk that the team might be detected by an enemy force.


Our systems can support multiple payloads, simultaneously. Payload examples include:

  • Electro-optical (EO) thermal cameras with zoom capabilities
  • Communications relays (like the MPU5 from Persistent Systems)
  • Scanning radar (based on the Echodyne Flight)
  • Laser target designator, IR beacon, SAR or LIDAR sensors
  • Overhead illumination using up to three 16,000 lumen light panels


The standoff range for radar and thermal sensors is 2-3 kilometers at elevation, depending on threat size and weather conditions. All collections are delivered to a ground-based PC or another display for operator analysis and can be also shared with other local team members.

Should communication support be available, the collections can also be delivered to the tactical operations center (TOC) to assure the combat commander (COCOM) and staff are kept apprised of events and possible threats to the team.

Flight Time

The flight time of the TAVs is essentially unlimited, so long as external power is available and wind does not reach a sustained 30 MPH. In the event of a loss of power or communications, or GPS denial, the system will invoke an auto land sequence, bringing the system safely back to the launch point. The TAV and ground power unit both contain backup batteries to ensure a safe landing and automatic tether recovery.


At Zenith AeroTech, we focus on providing custom solutions to meet unique requirements. Our platforms are flexible in design, as an example we recently developed a version of the QUAD 8 that carries the Trillium EO/IR camera, the Echodyne Flight Radar and the Persistent Systems MPU5 Radio/MANNET.  All uplink flight controls and download payload collections utilized the MPU5’s encrypted communications capabilities.

At ZAT we look forward to providing custom solutions based on real-world mission requirements. Give us a call to discuss your application, we’re ready to assist.