There has been a recent surge of drone attacks and incursions in locations diverse as Scandinavia, Africa, and the GCC regions, leaving us wondering when the next attack will occur. Drone attacks targeted critical infrastructure facilities, airports, and military installations, claiming lives and injuring many in their wake.
The most recent took place in Abu Dhabi on January 17, 2022, by Yemen’s rebel Houthi movement. The attack sparked an explosion that engulfed three oil tankers in flames in the Musaffah industrial area, causing another fire at an extension of the Abu Dhabi International Airport. The attack claimed three lives and left six people injured.
During the same month, military-style, large-winged drones reportedly plagued three of Sweden’s nuclear power plants (Forsmark, Ringhal drones were reported circling their parliament, government buildings, and the royal palace in Stockholm. Four large wing drones were spotted sighted near Kiruna and Lulea airports, and in Stockholm, disruptions to air traffic at Bromma Airport led to flights diversions. This recent spate of unauthorised and invasive drone activity led security agency Sapo to take a stand, deploying troops to the Baltic Island of Gotland.
Nigeria recently began to establish its air force. Rather than exercising their mandate to train maneuvers, their newly established air force was forced to mobilize several JF-17 fighter jets to intercept an unidentified second incident within a week.
Drone attacks – anywhere, anytime
The attacks mentioned above came hand in hand with many other similar events that captured attention worldwide. Drones are readily available, relatively inexpensive, and versatile; malicious regimes and criminal organizations adapt drones into lethal weapons, creating a real threat to public safety and homeland security that no longer be ignored.
Several years ago, a thirty-three-hour closure imposed on the UK’s second busiest airport (Gatwick) caused more than 1000 flights to be cancelled or delayed because of constant drone disruption to airport airspace. Each time airport authorities tried to reopen the drone reappeared. The incident reoccurred 40 times before stopping completely, causing disruptions and damages in the tens of millions of pounds.
Crossing Signals with the Future
Referred often as a “soft kill,” jamming is one technology concept used to mitigate unauthorized drones and is comparable to the signal jamming systems used to block cell phone communication by interference with the electronic system. The jamming system disrupts transmission and forces the drone to return home (RH). However, the downside is that many countries restrict the use of jamming systems, which are usually illegal for civilian use.
The concept of operations consists of four separate parts:
- Monitoring the area of interest for unauthorized drones;
- Detection of the drone signal;
- Identification of the make of drone; and
- Jamming the drone signal to the operator.
Drones travel at high speeds, making drone detection challenging. Indeed, many factors contribute to effectively jamming a drone signal using an RF jammer in an urban environment without blocking or interfering with other signals that use the same band, such as air traffic control at an airport.
Dark drones have emerged as a growing threat to commercial and military airspace. Terrorist regimes have become adept at converting off-the-shelf drones into “dark drones.” This is done by switching off the RF signal between the remote control and the drone. Most criminal and terror organizations use dark drones, turning them into a deadly weapon that requires a sophisticated radar system to detect it.
Fighting creativity with ingenuity
Skylock’s modular, multi-layered platform provides a comprehensive, flexible three-part solution 1) detection, (2) verification, and (3) mitigation to prevent a malicious drone threat.
The Skylock system can simultaneously track up to 400 drones individually using a powerful radar detection system. The RF detectors provide verification of the incoming drone, determining drone type and frequency.
Our advanced EO/IR trackers, thermal imaging and daytime cameras, provide accurate target acquisition and the ability to ascertain whether the drone is carrying a weaponised payload. Skylock’s scene awareness software facilitates easy integration with high-resolution imaging for target identification. The visual information automatically streams to the Command & Control (C4i) system – viewable by operators, commanders, and decision-makers.
Skylock provides an array of C-UAS solutions to mitigate unauthorized drones. Our counter-drone technologies deliver a complete layer of protection, from Dronelock, our autonomous multi-rotor platform that uses kinetic energy and sophisticated C-UAS tracking, to mobile and wearable systems that eliminate aerial threats.
Introducing the Spoofer – Leading-edge anti-drone technology
Skylock’s spoofing technology manipulates any unauthorized drone since it does not have the same limitations as jammers.
It is effective on all drones, regardless of size, wing type, or speed. The spoofing technology creates an unseen, protective dome over the critical infrastructure installation or area in question. It generates a ‘no-fly’ zone, where only friendly aircraft can fly.
The reason Skylock’s spoofing technology is so highly effective is because it does not control them; instead, it mimics the satellite signals received. Once the invading drone reads the counterfeit signal as valid, the spoofing technology has two modes of operation: the defensive dome forces the drone away from the protected area or, in the case of the ‘no-fly’ zone, the drone is unable to take off (or will immediately land, if it is airborne).
Effective against active or dark drones, it allows security officers to control their environment effectively. The spoofer integrates smoothly into the C4i centre, and performs in all weather and environmental conditions, both day and night.
Whether used in conjunction with jammers or independently, this technology-based solution enables governments, federal agencies, military forces, municipalities, and HLS organizations to anticipate and respond effectively to threats and incursions.
The unique SKYLOCK system has proprietary technology and yields unrivalled results. “The single most advanced anti-drone solution on the market.” Itzik Huber, CEO of SKYLOCK, takes great pride in the company’s technology and innovation. “It’s the difference between primitive and sophisticated technology. As we speak, our R&D experts are working on newer developments and features.” According to Huber, “there’s no comparison.”
This remarkable trailblazing technology is currently operational and available in most countries. With the rapid proliferation of drones, now is the time to think proactively and act dynamically for public safety and peace of mind.