FlyFocus Develops UAVs with Detachable Cable that Enable Mission-Critical Surveillance

FlyFocus’s new CableGuard is a detachable-link UAV for the civilian and law-enforcement sector. In cable mode, it flies up to 70 meters of altitude for extended times; however, if necessary, a remote control disconnects the connection cable, allowing the UAV to fly freely and follow a suspicious object for up to 30 minutes.

With 5 kW, the UAV is rated as the most powerful on the market today with cable. This capability is facilitated in part by FlyFocus’s use of isolated and regulated DCM DC/DC converters within the power distribution network, from the connecting cable to the UAV’s motors and electronics.

In cable mode, the UAV’s electric motors and on-board electronics are powered via the connection cable, which supplies 400 VDC from the ground station; this allows surveillance to be carried out practically indefinitely, with only occasional landings for maintenance inspections.

When the UAV is disconnected for free flight, the on-board batteries provide power to the vehicle, allowing for a flight of up to 30 minutes with a single daytime camera payload, or 20 minutes with the dual configuration, thermal sensing camera plus daylight. These connectionless flight periods give FlyFocus a competitive edge for surveillance applications.

FlyFocus uses the high power of 5 kW available through the connecting cable to improve both the performance of the UAV and its functionality. With eight engines, it can land safely even with two engines disabled or broken. The two cameras supplied are a full HD with 10× optical zoom and 4× digital zoom and an IR 640p for night vision with 4× digital zoom.

The available power allows FlyFocus to use better-quality cameras, such as heavier thermal-vision types because they are cooled or cameras with improved zoom. It also allows the ability to carry additional modules.

Vicor DC/DC converters, isolated and regulated, are inserted into the power supply network by the connection cable to the motors and electronics of the UAV. They can convert the 400 VDC of the connection cable up to the operating voltages of the UAV; the use of this high voltage reduces the current in the cable and the losses RI2. As a result, a much smaller and lighter cable can be used, always advantageous in air transport applications.

Additionally, the power density of DCMs far exceeds that of any other FlyFocus supplier. This factor combined with high conversion efficiency allows you to package eight 600-W modules into a single module of limited size placed under the UAV, and with only two heat sinks/fans.

Find out more about Vicor’s DCM converter modules at

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