Aerial LED light platforms solve challenges with today’s portable lighting solutions by replacing light masts with tethered UAVs

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, UNITED STATES, September 14, 2022 / — Virginia Venture Partners, the equity investment program of Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation (VIPC), today announced an investment in Blue Vigil. Reston, Va.- based Blue Vigil is the U.S. industry leader in tether power systems for commercial drones, which provide unlimited flight time for continuous flights. Blue Vigil will use this investment to develop a prototype and execute a beta program for a new Aerial LED (ALED) drone-based lighting platform.

Portable lights used to illuminate work sites today are big, heavy and dangerous. They must be towed into place, often resulting in suboptimal positioning. The light source also sits atop a mast which is practically limited to 25-30 feet in height. This combination of poor positioning and low mast height directs intense light across a work site at a low angle, creating dangerous glare that impacts workers, drivers and pedestrians. Blue Vigil’s ALED portable lighting platform solves this problem by replacing the light mast with a tethered UAV, illuminating the area from above and eliminating dangerous glare and shadows.

“Traditional man-portable stands lack adequate luminosity, while towable lights lack portability; both can lead to dangerous glare and devastating outcomes. By employing the use of LED panels and tethered UAVs, our highly-portable solution provides more usable light than existing products on the market,” says Rob Schumann, CEO. “We are thrilled to expand into this market and grow our product line, and we thank VIPC’s Virginia Venture Partners for their support.”

Leveraging its existing drone power tether technology, Blue Vigil’s ALED portable lighting platform places a high-intensity, drone-mounted LED panel 75-100 feet above the desired area. In addition, the ALED is packaged in a rugged, man-portable case that allows the light to be optimally positioned. At one tenth the size and weight of traditional portable light towers, the ALED also offers major operational and fleet management advantages over current portable lighting products at a comparable price point.

“With a management team of multiple professionals holding decades of experience in UAV, manufacturing and distribution businesses, Blue Vigil is well positioned to design a solution that will address these critical lighting problems across the board,” says Tom Weithman, VIPC Chief Investment Officer and Managing Director of Virginia Venture Partners. “This innovative solution is unique in today’s market, and we are thrilled to contribute to its success.”

About Blue Vigil
Blue Vigil is the U.S. industry leader in tether power systems for drones. The company has designed a reactive spool tether system that connects to most off-the-shelf drones. Blue Vigil was founded and is managed by a team of pilots and UAV experts in 2015, in partnership with a Harrisonburg, Virginia Investor Group, and James Madison University. For more information, visit

About Virginia Venture Partners
Virginia Venture Partners, formerly CIT GAP Funds, is the equity investment program of VIPC that makes seed-stage equity investments in Virginia-based technology, clean energy, and life science companies with a high potential for achieving rapid growth and generating a significant economic return for entrepreneurs, co-investors, and the Commonwealth of Virginia. Since its inception in 2005, Virginia Venture Partners has deployed $32.4 million in capital across more than 250 portfolio companies, including 17 companies in designated Opportunity Zones. Virginia Venture Partners’ investment decisions are guided by the Virginia Venture Partners Investment Advisory Board (IAB). This independent, third-party panel has drawn from the expertise of leading regional entrepreneurs, angel, and strategic investors, and venture capital firms such as New Enterprise Associates, Grotech Ventures, Harbert Venture Partners HIG Ventures, Edison Ventures, In-Q-Tel, Intersouth Partners, SJF Ventures, Carilion Health Systems, Johnson & Johnson, General Electric, and Alpha Natural Resources. For more information, please visit

About Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation (VIPC)
Connecting innovators with opportunities. The nonprofit operations arm of the Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority (VIPA), VIPC is the commercialization and seed stage economic development driver in the Commonwealth that leads funding, infrastructure, and policy initiatives to support Virginia’s innovators, entrepreneurs, startups, and market development strategies. VIPC collaborates with local, regional, state, and federal partners to support the expansion and diversification of Virginia’s economy.

Programs include: Virginia Venture Partners (VVP) | Virginia Founders Fund (VFF) |Commonwealth Commercialization Fund (CCF) | Smart Communities | Unmanned Systems | Public Safety Innovation |Entrepreneurial Ecosystems | Regional Innovation Fund (RIF) | Federal Funding Assistance Program (FFAP) for SBIR & STTR | University Partnerships | Startup Company Mentoring & Engagement. For more information, please visit Follow VIPC on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.