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Zenith and Virtex Partner for Tethered Drone Market

All-American UAV Supply Chain

Zenith AeroTech (Afton, VA) and VIRTEX Enterprises (Austin, TX) have announced a strategic partnership to design, build, test and manufacture tethered unmanned aircraft (TAV) systems.

Zenith provides TAV systems to government, emergency responder, telecoms and military customers. Its three platforms are the Hexa, the Quad 8 and the Quadro, offering incremental increases in payload capacity: Quadro is a 30lb aircraft, and can carry payloads of up to 30lb for missions of several days’ duration. All platforms use Zenith’s ground power tether management system, and integrated payloads include radar, audio announcement systems, illumination systems, LIDAR, SAR and communications relay equipment, as well as EO/IR sensors.

This new partnership allows our two companies to leverage their individual areas of expertise,” Kutlay Kaya, Chairman of Zenith AeroTech, stated. “Zenith brings years of custom-made TAV and free-flight drone design and manufacturing experience, while VIRTEX contributes its sought-after advanced electronics design, manufacturing, and testing capabilities. VIRTEX’s US-based manufacturing capability and its specialized aerospace experience will ensure that Zenith products are all American-made and fully NDAA compliant, unlike other drone suppliers. VIRTEX will also allow Zenith to scale up production to meet larger volume orders in a shorter timeframe.”

The vertical capabilities of our two companies include full system design, manufacture and integrated test,” added Dana Pittman, VIRTEX EVP. “We offer leading-edge custom solutions that support multiple channels, including defense. With this partnership, VIRTEX and Zenith will build complex systems to address diverse and complex problem sets.”

The Quadro tethered UAV is the largest in Zenith's current range. (Photo: Zenith AeroTech)

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