In warfare, new technologies only reign uncontested for so long before a counter is developed. From anti-missile batteries to learning how to use low-frequency radar to find stealth aircraft, the science of shooting things out of the sky has once again stepped up to combat a new enemy- small, unmanned drones used for reconnaissance or limited engagement.
In an era where small, unmanned drones can be repurposed -by just about anyone- to spy on enemy positions and drop improvised ordnance on unsuspecting victims (such as the recent case involving the unfortunate crew of an Iraqi M1A1 Abrams).
While a $38,000 Stinger MANPADS system can bring down a $300 drone from great distance and a shotgun could theoretically down a drone, the forensics value of what is left over would be very little.
Keeping this in mind, Australian company DroneShield has come up with a new futuristic weapon- known simply as the DroneGun.
Looking like something that was inspired by the 1980s science-fiction film Akira, DroneGun is a portable, backpack-powered electronic countermeasure weapon that acts as a direct-point jammer to bring down pesky drones for capture and examination.
With a little over one-mile range and the ability to select specific targets, DroneGun’s countermeasures override the drone’s control signal, allowing the offending drone to be returned to the original operator (thus giving away their position) or brought down for a controlled landing (while destroying the operator’s ability to watch).
Weighing about as much as an unloaded Mk 46 light machine gun, the dimensions appear to be about the same and utilize parts similar to those found on an M4/AR15 chassis. By no means light, the system’s weight is offset by its long range and usefulness in helping capture unwanted flying visitors.
DroneGun is currently not permitted for use in the United States due to FCC regulatory reasons, with only U.S. federal government and its agencies being the only entities currently allowed to test and evaluate the device within the US.
DroneGun has not been authorized as required by the United States Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”),” the developing company states on their website. “This device is not, and may not be, offered for sale or lease, or sold or leased, in the United States, other than to the United States government and its agencies, until such authorization is obtained. The use of DroneGun in the United States by other persons or entities, including state or local government agencies, is prohibited by federal law.”
If nothing else, one thing is for certain: DroneGun provides an interesting and unique solution that is sure to be a real potential downer for the “ISIS’ drone operators club”.
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