Sponsored by Blighter Surveillance Systems
31 Dec 19. What the US Army wants in a multidomain system. The Army wants to know if industry can provide a series of sensors for the service’s largest unmanned platform as a way to help see past enemy defenses.
As the Army prepares for multidomain operations and to modernize its forces to fight more sophisticated enemies, service leaders are looking for new solutions, according to a Dec. 27 request for information.
The request, formally known as multidomain operations support equipment, is made up of payloads and sensors that will detect, identify and geolocate enemy threat radar and communication systems that are part of integrated air defense systems.
The notice lists three sensors the Army is interested in, all of which should be interoperable with each other and could be mounted aboard a MQ-1C Gray Eagle.
The first is a radar warning receiver/electronic support measure payload. Such a payload will be able to detect and identify certain emissions from radars that are more stealthy and harder to detect. It should also be able to detect radar threats that frequently hop frequencies.
The second is an electronic intelligence payload that can detect, analyze and record radiations from low probability of detection radar systems as well as electronic warfare systems. The Army’s first brigade-organic electronic attack system – Multi Functional Electronic Warfare-Air Large pod – has already demonstrated promise on the electronic intelligence front.
“The air pod solutions are very important, especially when you start going against a near peer competitor. The main reason why is because you start now dealing with more of an [electronic intelligence] ELINT threat than with a strictly commercial threat,” Col. Kevin Finch, program manager for electronic warfare and cyber within Program Executive Office Intelligence, Electronic Warfare and Sensors, told C4ISRNET in October. “The ability to see radar systems … or artillery type radar systems, we need to be able to see that. Obviously, EW, you have to have some height to the antennas to be able to see a lot of that. If it’s on a pod solution, that’s a lot easier.”
Third, the notice lists a synthetic aperture radar/moving target indicator that will provide increased situational awareness through wide area surveillance, imaging of still targets and moving targets. This capability should be able to conduct on-board processing and transmission of near real time imagery and moving target detection to battlefield commanders, the notice states. (Source: Defense News)
30 Dec 19. FAA Proposes Requirements for Remote ID of UAS. (84 Fed. Reg.72438) – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a proposed rulemaking that would require the remote identification of unmanned aircraft systems. The FAA argues that the remote identification of unmanned aircraft systems in the airspace of the United States would address safety, national security, and law enforcement concerns regarding the further integration of these aircraft into the airspace of the United States while also enabling greater operational capabilities. Remote identification (or Remote ID) is the ability of an unmanned aircraft in flight to provide certain identification and location information that people on the ground and other airspace users can receive. Full implementation of remote identification relies on three interdependent parts that are being developed concurrently. The first is this proposed rule, which establishes operating requirements for UAS operators and performance-based design and production standards for producers of UAS. The second is a network of Remote ID UAS Service Suppliers (Remote ID USS) that would collect the identification and location in real-time from in-flight UAS. The Remote ID USS would perform this service under contract with the FAA, based on the same model the FAA currently uses for the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC). The third part of the remote identification ecosystem is the collection of technical requirements that standards-setting organizations will develop to meet the performance-based design and production requirements in this proposed rule. Interested persons have until February 2020, to submit their comments. (Source: glstrade.com)
30 Dec 19. BT launches service to tackle drone threat to infrastructure. BT’s enterprise unit has launched a counter-drone solution in partnership with Australian drone security company DroneShield to help organisations detect, track and identify drones threatening safety, security and privacy. Berenice Baker finds out more.
The potential impact of the drone threat against national infrastructure was highlighted in December 2018 when reports of drone sightings next to the runway of Gatwick Airport in the UK led to the cancellation of hundreds of flights, affecting around 140,000 passengers.
At this year’s DSEI, BT unveiled a counter-drone solution which aims to leverage the British telecoms giant’s reach and reputation to help organisations defend against drone disruption.
BT strategy and incubation director Simon Wingrove explains: “We identified a latent demand in the market, both in the public and the private sector, for drone detection and counter-drone solutions. We developed that, and established that we had the reach, the soft benefits of being a wholly trusted brand, and being pervasive in terms of technology and infrastructure.”
He says BT’s mobile solutions, particularly 5G and low-latency mobile macro coverage, lend themselves to unmanned traffic management, which can support legitimate drone operation as well as rogue drone detection.
Scalable counter drone measurements
BT’s solution combines networked 360-degree multi-sensor detectors that offer a range of up to 5km with tools that can identify drones, determine if they pose a threat and alert security teams in real time to respond. Where lawful, the service optionally offers countermeasures to jam drones at a range of up to 1.5km or disruptors to ground them.
“We offer clients self-response; the option to move people and collect evidence,” he says. “If a client has a permit, we can support them in intercepting the drone or returning it to a point of safety or, if risk assessment allows, interrupt the signal.
“However, signal disruption would be like losing the signal on a train to the public; Ofcom [the British communications regulator] needs to approve its fair use. But when you look at a scenario like Gatwick – at what cost? It is a proportionate response when public safety is impaired. But the countermeasure loop and legislative loop are catching up.”
Safeguard your skies with Counter Drone Solutions from BT from BT for business on Vimeo.
DroneShield COO James Gately explains that the solution scales to suit the type of operator.
“The detection and interception hardware can be broken down into two parts,” he says. “There’s the standalone product, which supports dismounted law enforcement and security services, and then there are the integrated or fixed-site solutions. The performance and outcomes for both are slightly different; one’s very simple, one’s quite complex.
“In fixed-site solutions, we’re integrating radar and radio-frequency (RF) direction-finding detection sensors. The RF detection is completely passive, so if you have an environment where either from the legislative or commissioning point of view radar becomes another level of approvals, then we can start with a very effective baseline solution.” (Source: army-technology.com)
Wingrove concludes that fundamentally, drone detection is extraordinarily difficult.
“What’s a drone? What’s a bird? What’s another item that communicates on publicly 2.4 GHz band?” he says. “We are effectively ensuring that we can pick that needle out of the haystack consistently. And it’s certainly a challenge.”
The next step for BT and DroneShield is to further develop their partnership and introduce a growing portfolio of products and services. They say they have a strong pipeline of public and private prospects, who they cannot currently name. (Source: army-technology.com)
27 Dec 19. U.S. aviation regulator proposes tracking most drones. The top U.S. aviation regulator on Thursday proposed a rule that would allow for remote tracking of most drones in U.S airspace. The Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA, said the proposed rule would require all drones operating in the United States to be compliant within three years.
Congress directed the FAA in 2016 to issue regulations or guidance by July 2018 to permit the public, the FAA, law enforcement and others to remotely track and identify drones and their operators during flight.
The race has been on for companies to create drone fleets as a complement for online retailers.
United Parcel Service Inc said in October that it won the government’s first full approval to operate a drone airline, which gave it a lead in the nascent drone delivery business over rivals Amazon.com Inc and Alphabet Inc.
Earlier this year, Alphabet’s Wing, a sister unit of search engine Google, was the first company to get U.S. air carrier certification for a single-pilot drone operation. It is testing home deliveries in a rural area around Blacksburg, Virginia.
Amazon, known for its splashy drone delivery tests, also has won experimental certifications to test its drones. (Source: Reuters)
Blighter® Surveillance Systems (BSS) is a UK-based electronic-scanning radar and sensor solution provider delivering an integrated multi-sensor package to systems integrators comprising the Blighter electronic-scanning radars, cameras, thermal imagers, trackers and software solutions. Blighter radars combine patented solid-state Passive Electronic Scanning Array (PESA) technology with advanced Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) and Doppler processing to provide a robust and persistent surveillance capability. Blighter Surveillance Systems is a Plextek Group company, a leading British design house and technology innovator, and is based at Great Chesterford on the outskirts of Cambridge, England.
The Blighter electronic-scanning (e-scan) FMCW Doppler ground surveillance radar (GSR) is a unique patented product that provides robust intruder detection capabilities under the most difficult terrain and weather conditions. With no mechanical moving parts and 100% solid-state design, the Blighter radar family of products are extremely reliable and robust and require no routine maintenance for five years. The Blighter radar can operate over land and water rapidly searching for intruders as small a crawling person, kayaks and even low-flying objects. In its long-range modes the Blighter radar can rapidly scan an area in excess of 3,000 km² to ensure that intruders are detected, identified and intercepted before they reach critical areas.