Rogue drones targeted by detect & destroy counter measures
The Five Eyes group of nations have banded together to show support for regulation of rogue drones causing disruption
Unlicensed drones are to be brought down by seek and destroy technology under new international plans to prevent disruption to residential areas and air traffic.
The new mobile unit, which will be formed by the UK Home Office, will be at the disposal of any police officer or law enforcement agency in the UK to counter potential drone threats at major events, exemplified by the delays caused at Gatwick last year by a single rogue drone.
The drone is expected to have military-grade cameras, radar and radio trackers, able to detect drones in a similar fashion to those employed by the British Armed Forces at Gatwick. The drone devices will be able to bring down rogues by jamming electronic equipment and shoulder-launched bazookas that fire a high-speed projectile that deploys a net and parachute before impact to disable the drone whilst bringing to the ground safely.
The bazooka currently has an operational range of 100m but research is being conducted to increase this to 300m in the near future.
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The plans are part of a three-year counter-drone plan which includes new standards and regulations for unmanned aerial vehicles, where each vehicle would be fitted with geofencing. This uses its GPS to prevent flight paths passing over power plants, prisons and places of high air traffic.
The initiative follows an agreement between US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, dubbed the Five Eyes group of nations. The aim is to “identify what more could be done at the manufacturing stage to mitigate drone risk by design.”
A recent test by Wing, of a drone delivery service in Australia was met with widespread resentment from Australian citizens as the drones can cause a large amount of noise in the form of a high-pitched buzzing as the drones pass over head. The sound has also been lined to drops in local bird wildlife in the area and after threats of drones being shot out of the sky by angry residents, the project was disbanded and moved to Virginia, US.
The US regulatory body Federal Aviation Administration has asked for drones to be issued with electronic licence plates to allow for easier detection and identification of a vehicle’s owner and pilot.