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Author Topic: Drones cause Gatwick chaos. 20/12/2018, ongoing.  (Read 1685 times)
eXPassenger
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« Reply #15 on: December 21, 2018, 03:50:16 pm »

There is a good analysis of the technical issues in locating and disposing of the drone(s) here:
https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/12/20/gatwick_drone_non_shootdown_reasons/
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Clan Line
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« Reply #16 on: December 21, 2018, 04:19:24 pm »

...TV detector vans can detect which room in an unlicensed property a TV is operating...

There's a very healthy online debate as to whether TV detection really exists; it doesn't seem to figure highly in evidence given in court cases.

There is no debate - TV Licensing (Capita) have admitted that no one has ever been prosecuted on "detector" van evidence.  The reason is quite simple; TVL have never disclosed how these so-called detector vans and their equipment work. For TVL to use this equipment as prosecution Court evidence, full technical details of this equipment and how it is used must be made available to the defendant (as it is with speed cameras). This info has never been released, so detector van evidence is not admissible - if it even exists ! There is a second, perhaps more serious, reason, some legal minds have postulated that covertly "listening" to someone's TV is in the same legal category as telephone tapping - and even Capita can't do that !   
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patch38
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« Reply #17 on: December 21, 2018, 05:34:09 pm »

Except it has just been closed again... (17:25 Friday)  Sad
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #18 on: December 21, 2018, 05:57:09 pm »

I have great sympathy for travellers caught up in this.  There’s been fierce criticism from some of how Gatwick has handled it, but, as with when there’s a major railway meltdown, you simply can’t deal with everyone as you and they would like.  I’m sure many staff worked extra hours and others came in especially, but there is a limit to what your systems, processes and staff on the ground can deal with, though I’m sure lessons can be learned.

It was nice to see the railways, GNER especially, helping out with free travel to displaced passengers.  Let’s hope this now doesn’t become a regular occurrence at our airports.
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2018, 06:11:12 pm »

The drone need not transmit even if it is controlled from the ground, and autonomous operation with no controlling transmission (for a whole flight or just parts of it) isn't hard to do, though perhaps not with standard retail kit. And making one work on a different radio frequency isn't impossible either. Ultimately, you just have to go up and grab it (or convert it into an brick, aerodynamically speaking).
I don't think it even need be controlled. It could be on a programmed flight path, with someone waiting at the landing zone to collect it and send it on its next programmed path.
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broadgage
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« Reply #20 on: December 21, 2018, 06:27:01 pm »

Except it has just been closed again... (17:25 Friday)  Sad

This will be a recurring problem IMHO.
Even if the perpetrators had been caught, which AFAIK they have not, the drone flying was a great success from the point of view of those organising it.
Whatever the motive was, I foresee copycat efforts.

I also perceive significant risks of false alarms and consequent closures because someone THINKS that they have seen a drone.

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TonyK
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« Reply #21 on: December 22, 2018, 12:16:50 am »

This will be a recurring problem IMHO.
Even if the perpetrators had been caught, which AFAIK they have not, the drone flying was a great success from the point of view of those organising it.
Whatever the motive was, I foresee copycat efforts.

I also perceive significant risks of false alarms and consequent closures because someone THINKS that they have seen a drone.

This will be a recurring issue, but probably not for long. You can bet your bottom rouble that if money has been the reason that there isn't a technology solution in the past, there will be a sudden loosening of the purse strings. There was some kit tested at Southend airport, that has led to a system being deployed at Guernsey prison to stop drones delivering drugs. That works with the smaller radio controlled stuff capable of lifting half a kilo or so, but how good it would be against the professional stuff being used here, I couldn't say. As for tracing the operators, just take a look at how big Gatwick is. It would take days to search everywhere that an operator could be. Triangulation of the radio signal could possibly be done, but apart from the possibility of something autonomous and pre-programmed being used, you could probably control one with commands issued via the mobile phone network. The RAF fly UAV's (posh name for big drones) in Afghanistan and Syria, with the controllers in Lincolnshire. I'd bet that a couple of clever sods with degrees in communications and computing could set up something rudimentary that would achieve some of the things we have seen in the past couple of days.

My money is on the environmental activist sector, but they usually brag about their stunts within the hour, and no-one has said a word yet. A foreign power could be behind it, just to show us that they can do it. A cartoon I have seen shows the Prime Minister at the controls, presumably to give the papers less room for Brexit.

That claim formed part of the debate I referred to, as did another that it was the aerial on the roof that gave you away...

Mine are in the loft.
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stuving
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« Reply #22 on: December 22, 2018, 12:43:36 am »

In my earlier post I concentrated on the highest level of response that is needed against foreseeable threats, and rather ignored the lower levels that are also needed. In the current Gatwick incident, it appears that level one would have been enough, so its absence is rather striking.

These are the four main levels of response I can think of:

1. detect and track intrusive objects by radar.

2. monitor and locate radio emissions likely to be relevant

3. suppress radio communications used in operating the intruders

4. remove the intrusive objects from the protected airspace

With regard to (2), spotting the right signal is hard unless it stands out on some way from others. If it looks just like many innocent users of a radio band you may never find it, though there are still techniques that can be used even then. But without success at doing (2), you can't do (3), which is in any case hard to do without massive power (swamping legitimate users over a wide area) or knowing where the receiver is.

And as to (1), you can buy radars designed to detect birds at airports, though I've not heard of any British airport with one. Drones of specific types, or other threats that main ATC radars would miss, might call for different detection processing in the radar, but the task is certainly doable. Sensitivity is not as issue: radars have been used for over 20 years to detect insects, capable of tracking a 2 mg aphid at 1km range, and telling you its species and where it is going. And drones are a lot bigger than that, and have twirly bits on them - and that always makes a radar's job in detecting them easier.

So it is not unreasonable to expect airports to have equipped themselves with radars to detect anything suspicious in their immediate vicinity. Obviously to have that kind of capability available, you needed to start thinking about it a long time ago. But if this Gatwick event does turn out to be at the lower level of criminality, it may be a valuable alarm signal to the airports (as well "police" in the broad sense) to accelerate their digital extraction plans.
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« Reply #23 on: December 22, 2018, 08:07:27 am »

Reported this morning that 2 arrests have been made, enquires continue.

The problem dealing with these types of drones is they are small and very nibble, attempts to shoot them with a rifle could lead to collateral damage cause by stray rounds also to get close enough to reliably hit the target the drone operator could see the marksman via the live feed from the drone; same would apply for net type devices.

The deterrent has to be arrests, prosecutions and a length custodial sentence.   Technological solutions can be overtaken by ………… technology also the drones could be adapted by the technically savvy to operate on different frequencies etc
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #24 on: December 22, 2018, 08:24:56 am »

Reported this morning that 2 arrests have been made, enquires continue.

The problem dealing with these types of drones is they are small and very nibble, attempts to shoot them with a rifle could lead to collateral damage cause by stray rounds also to get close enough to reliably hit the target the drone operator could see the marksman via the live feed from the drone; same would apply for net type devices.

The deterrent has to be arrests, prosecutions and a length custodial sentence.   Technological solutions can be overtaken by ………… technology also the drones could be adapted by the technically savvy to operate on different frequencies etc

Obvious solution - don't shoot the drone, shoot the operator. Bigger target, slower moving (less "nibble" too!) 🙂
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Western Pathfinder
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« Reply #25 on: December 22, 2018, 08:39:56 am »

How nice it is to see that the sprit Of goodwill towards all men has finally arrived in his thread
And while I'm here A Very Merry Christmas,and a Peaceful,prosperous ,and HappyNewyear to all.
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bradshaw
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« Reply #26 on: December 22, 2018, 09:33:17 am »

Interesting headline in The Times today

‘Grayling put drone law on hold before flight chaos’

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #27 on: December 22, 2018, 11:30:07 am »

How nice it is to see that the sprit Of goodwill towards all men has finally arrived in his thread
And while I'm here A Very Merry Christmas,and a Peaceful,prosperous ,and HappyNewyear to all.

OK, perhaps I was a bit harsh, maybe not shoot them.......... Grin

https://metro.co.uk/2018/12/20/grandma-says-gatwick-drone-pilot-hanged-punishment-8271307/?fbclid=IwAR3d5vV-H_uNtxuPsFXWd7vWGipSt0zMq0O2X8rYlpmmUvlZazrBNht0vS0
« Last Edit: December 22, 2018, 11:37:47 am by TaplowGreen » Logged
TonyK
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« Reply #28 on: December 22, 2018, 01:57:27 pm »

There's an interesting quote from Chris Woodroofe, Chief Operating Officer, Gatwick Airport, in the CAA press release announcing tightened drone laws in May 2018:

Quote
We welcome the clarity that today’s announcement provides as it leaves no doubt that anyone flying a drone must stay well away from aircraft, airports and airfields.

Drones open up some exciting possibilities but must be used responsibly. These clear regulations, combined with new surveillance technology, will help the police apprehend and prosecute anyone endangering the travelling public.

proving that it is one thing outlawing something, and quite another stopping it.

There is mention in that article about the penalties someone may face for "endangering the safety of an aircraft" - unlimited fine and / or 5 years in prison as a maximum. This bit of law was achieved by an amendment to the Air Navigation Order 2016, and so far as I can see was done by Statutory Instrument rather than primary legislation. So far as I can tell, there is no case law relating to deliberate interference with the operation of an airport, so this will be interesting on a number of fronts. If it comes to trial, that is.
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« Reply #29 on: December 22, 2018, 02:01:11 pm »

How nice it is to see that the sprit Of goodwill towards all men has finally arrived in his thread
And while I'm here A Very Merry Christmas,and a Peaceful,prosperous ,and HappyNewyear to all.

OK, perhaps I was a bit harsh, maybe not shoot them.......... Grin

https://metro.co.uk/2018/12/20/grandma-says-gatwick-drone-pilot-hanged-punishment-8271307/?fbclid=IwAR3d5vV-H_uNtxuPsFXWd7vWGipSt0zMq0O2X8rYlpmmUvlZazrBNht0vS0



Why are these being flied so close to an airport, is it deliberate or pure accident,They not knowing the airport was there.
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