Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWE)* and Tethered UAV systems** can benefit a lot with fully automated takeoff and landing. Our product make's it possible to operate tethered autonomous airplanes (tethered UAV) without any on board propulsion system using only wind to keep the aircraft in air. With AWE it is even possible to produce energy from strong winds at high altitudes!
Automatic takeoff and landing ability is the key element in making AWE technology commercially available and lower the cost of operation for tethered UAVs by removing the need of complex and prone to failure onboard propulsion. In this video Alula Energy presents our propietary concept of linear takeoff and landing system, which has also been proven in preliminary field tests.
*The commercial scale AWE system's airborne part, the tethered wing, would have 8-15m wingspan. That equals to 100-700kW powerplant. Our automatic takeoff and landing system (TLS) is the only solution that can be scaled up to allow the reliable operation with autonomously flying wings of this size.
Airborne Wind Energy (AWE) is a cost effective way to produce wind energy from strong and sustaining winds at higher altitudes: "Winds in higher altitudes are typically stronger and more consistent than those close to the ground, both on- and off-shore." Typical AWE system has size and weight of only a fraction of that of the modern wind turbine.
**Tethered UAVs can be used for example radio link- or surveillance system platforms at altitudes from 100m to 1000m (300-3000ft). In our case the UAV can operate without any propulsion power, using only wind to stay on air for long period of time. In case of low wind condition the system can stay on air by pumping energy to increase aircracft's flight speed by pulling in and releasing the tether in cyclic motion. The absence of on board propulsion system makes aircraft more simple and reliable.
Alula Energy Oy develops takeoff and landing systems for tethered UAVs and Airborne Wind Energy.
Music by: Dj Infekto
 Airborne Wind Energy (book); edit. Ahrens et al., Springer 2013.