A higher ground in the battlefield gives you many distinct advantages. You can observe a large amount of area, track your enemy’s footings and fire at them easily f you wish to. If you can’t understand the significance of the higher ground, talk to Darth Vader who lost his arms, legs, lungs and pretty much everything except his cold black heart against this assumption! So, higher ground is necessary and no amount of modern technology can undo this reality, but we can use it to achieve higher ground without having the need of actually achieving it.
This tethered drone concept named Tether Eye allows field units to deploy this wire connected drone and now the robot can provide you the high ground without actually achieving that height. It is being tested by the US military and it streams continuous live feed to the soldiers below taking over the role of a watch tower in battle. Now drones need a lot of battery juice and we just cannot afford to recharge them every now and then. So that is when the tethered wire comes into play. The drone itself can be launched from a portable self-contained base station.
It has electro-optical and infrared cameras and can fly up to an altitude of 45 meters. It can also capture HD 360-degree video from above and stream it back to the troops below. But, I do believe that having a drone in the sky might give you away to the local guerillas because it is not something that hard to spot from a distance.
These kind of drones have been used before with the Russian company Fotokite’s tethered drones used by both BBC and National Geographic Channel.
You can see the tethered drone in action below: