Interviews, STARTUPS

GET’s wireless charging

US’ Global Energy Transmission Corporation (GET Corp.) of Russian origin was among top three innovation leaders at the largest pilotless industry exhibition, AUVSI Xponential-2018 in the US last May. The utmost attention was attracted by the wireless power transmission to drones technology which GET has been developing for a few years. Now the company (with Tim Draper, billionaire and technology visionary, being one of its investors) will present its solution in Europe. On September 25 Drone Berlin exhibition opens, where GET will offer the market its first solution on the turn-key basis. It will include a wireless ground charging plant and an industrial class remotely charged multicopter. Invest Foresight learned the details and prospects of the new solution from Leonid Plekhanov, the GET founder.

– What are the features of the GET’s new solution?

– It is a complex system which includes a charging station and an aerial device equipped with a remote power transmission and reception system. We have integrated into the device a wireless charger and special fast batteries allowing to charge a drone within minutes and not hours. We have also employed a new engine and propellers which show good results as far as their operation and controls are concerned.

– What does your solution include?

– A basic solution includes a charging station and two drones. A client can then select the required number of stations and drones. The station’s peak capacity is 12 kW which is sufficient to rapidly charge two or three drones at once. The charging area is up to eight meters in diameter. The station is quite universal with operational temperatures range between 0 and +40C. The drone’s payload is six kilos, and flight time without charging is 28 minutes (with a minimum payload) to 16.5 minutes (with a maximum payload).

– Where can the solution be employed?

– It can mainly be used for open areas surveillance, or for monitoring infrastructure, including its lengthy elements such as electricity transmission lines and pipelines, industrial sites, or for the needs of the agriculture (crops monitoring, etc.). At this moment, these are B2B projects which are quite large and capital intensive, and require developing vast infrastructure. They will only repay over many years.

– What are the advantages of your system in comparison to the present-day monitoring solutions?

– In the market, for instance, there is a solution developed by a well-known German company which is present in Russia for over a century, which includes an unpiloted helicopter (with an internal combustion engine) and a landing field. Well, a helicopter is worth about half a million dollars, the landing field is another million. Our drone’s price starts at $20K, and the charging station’s at $80K. A client can then get more drones and stations and that will make up the ultimate project cost. Yet supplying 20 charging stations and drones will still be cheaper than employing an unmanned helicopter. Besides, in our systems, there are no components which can fail, while the price of a drone is much lower than the infrastructure cost. In case a helicopter is lost, half of all investment is gone. In our case, nothing like that happens.

– What are the countries that have shown interest?

– The main interest comes from the US companies now. That is quite logical since we have actively advanced in that market. Now, we are going to an exhibition in Berlin and it will be interesting since we have not exhibited our products in Europe. Yet there are European companies interested in our solutions. As for Asia, we are still exploring the market.

– When will your solution be available in the market?

– We will collect preorders after Drone Berlin until CES2019 in early January. Deliveries will start in mid-2019.

By Olga Blinova

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