CONEXPO cometh. We’re talking about the biggest tradeshow in America by physical size. It only happens every three years, and it’s all centered around construction equipment. CONEXPO-CON/AGG will happen again March 14-18, 2023, in Las Vegas. We’ll be there. So will everyone else. Follow our coverage right here. Here comes more important CONEXPO news…
Re-envisioning the traditional towable light tower category, Blue Vigil, a developer of tether power systems for commercial drones, announced the CONEXPO preview of its new Autonomous Aerial LED (ALED) portable light aimed at making nighttime sites safer and more productive. The startup’s breakthrough person-portable light recently won the 2023 Innovation Award at the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) tradeshow in Phoenix. CONEXPO attendees will see the light at the Las Vegas Convention Center in North Hall booth N10816.
“We are bringing major technological innovation to the $4.5B global light tower category,” said Robert Schumann, CEO, Blue Vigil. “Currently, towed light towers are the de-facto standard for a majority of nighttime roadside, bridge, overpass and other horizontal construction sites. However, they do a poor job of illuminating work scenes due to the inherent limitation in the tower height and lack of flexibility in placement. We have a better, and safer, solution to answer what will soon become known as ‘yesterday’s problems.’”
Blue Vigil’s ALED is a compact area lighting system that mounts a high-intensity LED array on a tethered Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), also known as a drone, positioning the light 40 ft (12 m) up to 100 ft (30.5 m) above a job site for as long as needed. The ALED puts over 8,000 sq ft (743 sq m) of light on the ground providing nearly twice as much coverage as traditional towed light towers. By illuminating a work zone from 40′ to 100′ above, light shines directly down onto the area of operation, without creating the dangerous glare and shadows that negatively affect workers, residential environments, wildlife, and motorists.
“Illuminating a work area from directly above eliminates dangerous shadows or glare that create hazardous conditions for workers and motorists,” said Schumann. “The ALED Portable Light will dramatically improve work zone safety and operational efficiency by putting more usable light on the ground where it’s needed.”
The ALED is more energy efficient than current LED light towers as it can be powered by wall/shore power; a smaller, quieter portable 3000 W generator; or a common vehicle inverter.
The ALED is purpose-built and uniquely designed to withstand the rigors of use in the field and on construction sites. The all-weather light is enclosed in a rugged, person-portable wheeled case that can easily be positioned wherever illumination is needed. The base is 30 in wide, 42 in long, and 24 in in depth. Because it can be easily moved and positioned, it reduces the need to have heavy light towers stationed in areas where they aren’t always needed. Weighing 75 lbs. (34 kg), the product fits into a pickup or SUV and does not require a trailer or towing, making it easy to transport, easy to position and easy to store. Set-up is extremely simple: position the unit, open the case and push one-button to raise the light into position.
This emerging technology has already garnered industry recognition. At the ATSSA’s 53rd Annual Convention & Traffic Expo, the ALED was selected for an Innovation Award, one of 18 products in this year’s New Products Rollout. According to the ATSSA, “It wowed the department of transportation officials who served as judges.”
Blue Vigil is currently taking pre-orders for the ALED and scheduling post-show product demonstrations. Production is planned for late Q4 2023/early Q1 2024.