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This ‘Rocket Launcher’ Looking-Device Can Safely Disable Drones Near Airports

skywall

The device might look like a portable rocket launcher, but it’s the latest attempt to make airports safe from rogue drones.

The SkyWall 100, designed by a company in England, could be the best weapon yet developed to counter possible threats from civilian drones.

The portable defense system, developed by Open Works Engineering, could provide the type of counter measures needed to safely bring down drones that are either flying with an intent to cause harm/damage who that accidentally stray close to restricted areas.

It was recently revealed that last month a drone came within 16 feet of an Air France jet as it was landing at Charles de Gaulle Airport in France. That’s the closest encounter yet between a drone and an aircraft. The pilot had to disconnect the autopilot and take evasive action.

With the proliferation and sophistication of drones that are available for anyone to purchase, the idea of drones being used to deliver explosives or to bring down airliners is a burgeoning threat.

The SkyWall 100 system appears to be a reasonable deterrent when it comes to bringing down/capturing drones.

It’s similar to a bazooka or other shoulder-mounted weapons. The SkyWall 100 uses compressed gas and a smart-launch system. It fires a programmable projectile which releases a net that captures the drone and a parachute which brings the drone to the ground.

The SkyWall 100 is portable and can be deployed by a single operator. Open Works Engineering is also developing two more versions – a semi-permanent device needing two operators and one that will be a permanent installation.

Written by Wendell Barnhouse

Wendell Barnhouse is a veteran journalist with over 40 years of experience as a writer and an editor. For the last 30 years, he wrote about college sports but he has had an interest and curiosity about aviation since he was in grade school.