A handheld launcher designed to disable rogue drones and bring them safely back to earth has generated ‘huge interest’ after being shown to UK police and security firms.
Due to be available later this year, the ‘man-portable’ SkyWall100, is designed to counter public nuisance, invasion of privacy, security concerns and terrorist threats.
As we reported earlier this month, the SkyWall100 fires a gas-powered projectile armed with a net to intercept a problem drone, before deploying a parachute to bring the device safely back to the ground.
Since its unveiling, SkyWall100 has been showcased at the recent Home Office Security & Policing event in Farnborough, Hampshire, where it received ‘huge interest from domestic and international visitors’, according to its developer, UK firm OpenWorks Engineering.
Fuelled by improvements in technology, drones are increasingly used by photographers for aerial photography.
However, in recent months there have been growing safety fears over drones, including several reports of near misses with commercial aircraft.
In 2015, for example, a drone enthusiast who flew his device over Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament and football stadiums, was banned in the first prosecution of its kind in the UK.
The SkyWall100, designed for use by authorities such as police, uses a laser rangefinder and on-board computer to calculate the speed and position of a drone.
Last year, escalating concerns over drones led the Civil Aviation Authority, the pilots’ union BALPA and air traffic control company NATS to launch a drone safety campaign.