Tuesday, May 30, 2023

New Vetal tail-seater VTOL drone offers a flight time of up to 60 minutes

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Whether you call them unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), miniature pilotless aircraft, or flying mini-robots, drones are rapidly growing in popularity and are widely being used for personal and industrial applications. There is no shortage of designs to choose from. While fixed-wing drones can fly farther and faster than multicopters, they usually require a runway to take off and land. On the other hand, VTOLs sport multiple horizontal propellers to take off like a helicopter, then switch to one or more vertical props and wings for forward flight.

HG Robotics thinks that they might have created the best of both worlds with its Vetal flying-wing drone. It uses a fixed-wing design but also has a couple of rotors built into it to help it take off and land vertically.

The tail-sitter drone sits on its rear end facing nose-up during take-off and landing. To enter the forward flight mode, it simply tips forward in mid-air. The Vetal isn’t necessarily designed to be a consumer-grade drone; instead, the company positions the Vetal as a drone that can be used for agricultural surveying and general surveillance.

The fixed-wing drone is especially suitable for agricultural surveying and general surveillance.
The fixed-wing drone is especially suitable for agricultural surveying and general surveillance. Credit: HG Robotics

Built with military-grade material and packed with the latest military concept, the drone comes with a carbon fiber shell body, and it has a wingspan of 4.2 ft (1.3 m). It measures 2.2 x 4.2 x 3.2 ft (0.7 x 1.3 x 1 m), weighs 8.4 lbs (3.8 kg) without payload, and can carry a payload of up to 1.8 lbs (800 g).

The Vetal drone has two motors that are powered by a swappable 12 Ah lithium-polymer battery that claims to offer a flight time of up to 60 minutes on a charge, depending on the payload. The drone can reach the top speed of 56 mph (90 km/h) during forward flight and has a cruising speed of 34 mph (54 km/h). It can fly at altitudes of up to 6,560 ft (2,000 m).

In addition, the VTOL can be modified with different types of cameras, sensors, and other customizable gimbals, thanks to the new quick-release mechanism. Its front-facing camera can fully rotate, offering a 360-degree view and object tracking.

Vetal is one of the first VTOL drones in the market that have a fully onboard 4G/5G capability and is designed for longer-range BVLOS operation. Its remote controller works at a range of up to 4 miles (7 km). The Vetal can also land on moving objects such as trucks, ships, trains.

You can now order the Vetal drone via the HG Robotics website.

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