Israeli drone manufacturer Robotican has has successfully conducted an autonomous drone interception demonstration for the U.S. Department of Defense Irregular Warfare Technical Support Directorate (IWTSD), which one of its missions is to identify capabilities and technologies to struggle against irregular threats.
Main goal of the demonstration was to test Goshawk’s ability to capture hostile drones penetrated into a no-fly zone. After identifying the target by the Radar systems, Goshawk autonomously performs its mission – from launch to landing. Complex scenarios were also examined at this demonstration, to include chasing hostile drone and challenging head-on engagement. Robotican says that its Goshawk has successfully withstood the missions and was able to capture the hostile drones and to deliver them to a predefined area for safe disposal – with no collateral damage.
Goshawk is an autonomous drone, able to capture hostile drones through designated net. Goshawk interfaces with existing aerial defense systems and launches toward a target drone from the Smart NEST launch pad composed of two drone trappers. As opposed to other solutions, like weapon interception or GPS signal disruption, Goshawk captures and carries the drone intact. After capturing the hostile drone in the net, it is delivered to a safe area, preventing collateral damage that may be caused by potential drone falling, and also provides the ability to investigate the enemy’s drone. According to Robotican, Goshawk performed around 680 documented aerial interceptions of drones.
Seeing the increasing use of drones by hostile groups, as the few weeks ago attack on a merchant ship in Oman bay, the American Department of Defense set the struggle against drones’ threat higher in its priority list. Nowadays, it formulates a comprehensive defense plan from drones and C-sUAS, based on various detection and interception technologies in complex scenarios. In last January the DoD announced new strategy which calls for risk-based assessments and viewing counter-sUAS defense from a joint perspective to rapidly track, defend and defeat drone attacks. Part of this strategy is the procurement and integration of various tools to cope with the drones’ threat, also evaluating that the next years’ budgets for this purpose will increased. Past publications mentioned that Israeli technologies are being examined as part of in these efforts.