Sara Verbruggen

Freelance journalist

Author Bio ▼

Experienced freelance B2B journalist and editor, specialising in fields of renewable energy, energy storage, smart grids and nanotech.
May 22, 2017

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Anti-drone tech

2000ft drone-busting invisible fence erected by Guernsey prison

Les Nicolles prison on Guernsey in the Channel Islands has become the first in the world to use an invisible shield to foil drones programmed to smuggle in drugs, weapons and mobile phones.

The fence’s technology works by jamming electronic transmissions that return the drone to its sender preventing its delivery of contraband. Sensors act as disruptors to jam the drone by blocking radio frequencies.

Sky Fence has been developed by Nottingham-based firm Drone Defence and Eclipse Digital Solutions with installation costs upwards of £100,000.

Drone Defence founder and CEO Richard Gill said: “It disrupts the control network between the flyer and the drone. The drone then activates return to home mode and it will then fly back to the position where it had signal with its flyer.

“Someone described it as the final piece in a prison’s security puzzle. I think it could have a significant worldwide impact.”

Gill said the technology neither “hacks” nor damages the drones.

The technology can combat the increasing number of unmanned aerial vehicles that are being dispatched to jails to drop off illicit goods that are fuelling growing violence and disorder among inmates.

Les Nicolles prison is a mixed category jail with 139 inmates. Prison governor David Matthews said: “This is the first time this technology has been used in any prison anywhere in the world.

“I would like to see it adopted in other UK prisons because it has become a significant problem there. Drones can carry weapons, contraband, mobile phones and drugs. This is about prevention.”

The Drone Zone one again returns to IFSEC International in June for its 2017 edition. Brought to you in partnership with The UK Drone Show, the Drone Zone will feature demonstrations of drone and anti-drone technology from Yuneec, Dedrone, Hitachi and Magos. The Drone Zone will form part of  Borders & Infrastructure Expo, a brand new show within IFSEC dedicated to the protection of borders and critical national infrastructure.

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