Anti-drone sentiment is high in this day and age. To everyday people, it is the intrusion of privacy and to the government, it is clearly a security threat that needs to be addressed. Having said that, homeland security and law enforcement organizations around world are working relentlessly in search for a solution, resorting to means like using birds of prey like the hawk and drone with net to take errand drones out of the sky. More recently, a bazooka-like weapon was developed to ensnare drone from the ground and today, research and development outfit Battelle, showcased a less damaging solution that will bring down a drone in a controlled manner with an assault rifle-like device called DroneDefender.
DroneDefender has a body that resemble that of an AR-15 with an aiming sight mounted on its picatinny rail and a front vertical grip, but instead of a barrel and hand guard, it has electronics with multiple antennas that are designed to bring down a flying drone safely to the ground through disruption of radio control frequency and GPS. The disruption prevents remote action, including detonation, from being executed by the adversary and therefore, minimizing drone damage and risk to public safety. So far, this is the first anti-drone device that is able to ground an errand drone in more ’humane’ manner.
DroneDefender has an effective range of about 400 meters (1,312 feet) and offers up to five hours of continuous use, powered by an onboard battery pack. DroneDefender works pretty much like a rifle and probably handles like one too, except for (possibly) a heavier front end, and like a firearm, it offers instantaneous threat mitigation with an effective diameter of 30-degree cone. Battelle DroneDefender anti-drone gun is, unfortunately, not available commercially due to FCC ruling and so, don’t expect yourself to be bringing down drones in your backyard anytime soon. For now, only the United States’ Homeland Security and the Department of Defense are equipped with this anti-drone device.
Images courtesy of Battelle.