"It's getting awful crowded in my sky." - Captain Malcolm Reynolds, "Firefly"
Drones are the technology everyone is talking about. From large military models that are gearing up for combat to package-delivering drones and aerial photography drones to hobby racers, there are very few areas drones aren't invading. That includes your backyard and your privacy.
There are numerous stories of drones lurking around homes spying on people, flying near accidents and fires to get a closer look, or almost running into airliners. It's only going to get worse after Christmas this year when low-cost drones end up under the Christmas trees of thousands of amateur drone operators.
You'll see a lot more stories like drones crashing into babies, crashing at major events, crashing into national treasures, interfering with emergency personnel and more. It's no wonder that there's a surge of interest in ways to knock drones out of the sky.
Some companies are making anti-drone ammo, Boeing built an anti-drone laser, some people are experimenting with sound cannons, and some people just use the old-fashioned fun. As we've said in the past, however, destroying a flying drone is actually a bad idea, and could land you in serious legal trouble.
Now there's a new solution. It's called the Blighter Anti-UAV Defense System, and it's a huge leap forward in knocking drones out of the air without firing dangerous bullets or lasers.
It has three parts: a radar, a tracker with 12x zoom and thermal imaging, and the "gun" or Directional Radio Frequency Inhibitor. That sounds fancy, but it's actually fairly simple.
The unit detects a drone, the operator uses the tracker to inspect it, and decided if they want to disable it. If they do, they fire the "gun" that disrupts the radio signal controlling the drone. Depending on the drone, it will either keep flying, return to its base or fall out of the sky.
Of course, this won't work so well against military drones or autonomous drones, but it will affect the majority of personal drones on the market.
There's no word on prices for the Blighter, but it's probably expensive. Still, if the technology exists it should work its way down to the average person eventually, especially as drones become more common.
In the meantime, here's a video showing the Blighter in action.