Author Topic: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots  (Read 92784 times)

G M

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Crafty_Dog

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Hiding from drones
« Reply #254 on: September 11, 2021, 06:48:07 AM »
Have not had a chance to watch these yet, but they come to me in a way that makes me want to do so so I put them down here so I can circle back to them when I do have the time to do so-- notes from anyone who gets to them before I do so would be greatly appreciated.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3jZ_7D9otc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G10E_eo7Q00

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmnaVhAliPU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYVpvXNiYi8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLc8V3TneqA&t=1s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1RipwqJG50c



« Last Edit: September 11, 2021, 07:18:26 AM by Crafty_Dog »

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WT: Iranian drones
« Reply #259 on: October 07, 2021, 04:11:52 AM »
Dissidents accuse Iran of smuggling drones

Data shows sophisticated weapons

BY GUY TAYLOR THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Iran’s theocratic regime has ramped up its drone manufacturing operation in recent years and is now smuggling an increasingly sophisticated slate of the weaponized remote control aircraft to allied militant groups around the Middle East, according to intelligence gathered by a leading Iranian dissident group.

The Iranian military’s embrace of drones, or uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs), has given Tehran an expanding edge in asymmetric warfare across the region while U.S. sanctions have otherwise crushed the capabilities of its conventional air forces, the National Council of Resistance of Iran said Wednesday.

The dissident group gave a presentation to journalists at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, revealing what it characterized as “newly disclosed information” about the scope and nature of the Iranian program, including a matrix of eight drone development complexes.

“The UAV program of the Iranian regime is the primary weapon used for terrorism and warmongering and destabilizing the region, and certainly this is supplying proxies in the region

with those UAVs,” said Alireza Jafarzadeh, the deputy director of the U.S. branch of NCRI.

The group has critics and followers in various countries and is known for openly supporting regime change in Tehran.

“There are two elements involved in the [drone] production. One is the Ministry of Defense, and the other one is the Aerospace Force of the Revolutionary Guards,” said Mr. Jafarzadeh. He circulated data obtained and compiled by the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK), an NCRI-affiliated group with members operating inside Iran.

Mr. Jafarzadeh’s claims were not immediately verifiable and the MEK has a controversial history in Washington, but the group appears to have sources deeply embedded within the Iranian defense community. MEK members are credited with signifi cant revelations about Iran’s covert weapons activities, most notably its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

The Wall Street Journal published an expose Wednesday that quoted U.S., European and Israeli defense sources as saying Tehran’s ability to develop and deploy drones rapidly is changing the security equation in the volatile region.

The components of Iran’s drones are widely available, although some designs mimic those of the Israeli and U.S. militaries. The Journal cited a confi dential assessment produced for the British government by C4ADS, a Washington-based think tank that says Iran has armed its Houthi allies in Yemen with drones using a network of commercial companies around the world.

Mr. Jafarzadeh’s presentation outlined a matrix of drone and parts manufacturers that he said are active inside Iran and are aligned with or directly controlled by the Iranian military or the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps.

Among those Mr. Jafarzadeh named are Ghazanfar Roknabadi Industries, Quds Air Industries, Fajr Industries Group, Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Co., Shahid Basir Industry, Bespar Sazeh Composite Co., Paravar Pars Co. and an unidentified special drone production operation in the Iranian city of Semnan.

Paravar Pars, according to documents circulated by the NCRI, belongs to the aviation research unit of the IRGC’s Imam Hossein University and “copies … and builds UAVs, ultralight planes, and drones and also installs cameras and other equipment on drones.”

Mr. Jafarzadeh outlined how the crux of the drone development program is tied to the “logistics directorate” of Iran’s elite Quds Force, a key branch of IRGC. He said the directorate manages the shipping of finished drones and drone components to militant groups allied with Tehran in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.

“It is a very interesting and very important part of the whole operation of the Quds Force,” Mr. Jafarzadeh said. “They actually have a smuggling office, whose job is to basically smuggle, whether the finished product of UAVs or the parts [using] air, land and sea pathways to send these weapons to their proxies in these countries.”

Reports of drone strikes carried out by Iranian forces or proxies in recent months often have been vague and difficult to confirm. An attack in July targeted the Israeli-linked British tanker Mercer Street in the Arabian Sea.

A Pentagon investigative team announced in August that it believed the drone used in that attack was produced in Iran and was loaded “with a militarygrade explosive.” Details on who operated the drone were never clarified.

In late August, at least eight people were wounded in a drone strike that Yemen-based Houthi militants carried out against Saudi Arabia’s Abha International Airport. The Houthi forces have received considerable backing from Tehran in Yemen’s bloody civil war.

Similar strikes have proved vexing for U.S. forces based in nearby Iraq, where drone attacks carried out by Shiite militia groups with deep ties to Iran have added another layer of complexity.

After an early-September drone strike near U.S. forces stationed at Irbil International Airport in northern Iraq, Reuters reported that witnesses heard at least six explosions. That suggests the aircraft used in the attack may have been carrying multiple miniature missiles.

The news agency noted that the airport in Irbil, the capital of Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region, had come under attack several times over the year leading up to the incident, including by drones carrying explosives.

Iran denies any involvement in the attacks in Iraq, but U.S. officials have blamed the strikes on Iran-aligned militias that have vowed to fight until roughly 2,500 U.S. military forces leave the country. The U.S. troops are in Iraq to support Iraqi military operations against the Islamic State terrorist group.

The Iranian drone activity was revealed amid speculation that the Biden administration may be preparing to ease sanctions on Iran as part of an effort to lure the regime into diplomatic talks toward restoring aspects of the Obama-era Iranian nuclear deal.

Mr. Jafarzadeh said the U.S. should be pushing to increase sanctions, not ease them. He said sanctions are “a significant tool in limiting the resources of the Iranian regime in making them pay the price.”

“If the regime is allowed to do such an extensive [drone] operation … without any consequences, they only get encouraged,” he said. “If they constantly hear that ‘We’re open for negotiations, let’s sit down and talk’ and repeatedly hear that instead of being penalized and feeling consequences for the terror and mayhem and destruction they have created in the region, that certainly is not helpful.”

Others have argued that sanctions may have little impact on an Iranian drone program that relies less on the procurement of sophisticated military equipment than on establishing networks for acquiring consumerlevel drone equipment and then militarizing it in clandestine facilities.

“Sanctions may not be able to affect Iran’s program in a way that improves security for local populations or U.S. citizens or military personnel working and living in the Middle East,” said Kirsten Fontenrose, a former top National Security Council offi cial focused on the Middle East.

Ms. Fontenrose, who now heads the Scowcroft Middle East Security Initiative in the Atlantic Council’s Middle East Programs, noted in an analysis published by Defense One that a June attack on a U.S. State Department facility in Baghdad was carried out by a drone “built cheaply with off-the-shelf components, including a motor made in Japan and an inexpensive commercial Global Navigation Satellite System antenna with a built-in compass.”

“Other parts,” she wrote, “come from black-market salvagers of drone test and attack debris, who would not be affected by sanctions.”


Crafty_Dog

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #261 on: October 15, 2021, 02:38:22 AM »
I'm thinking it is time for us to look into having a drone of our own.

I'm reading about the Feds buying Chinese made drones despite the security threat.

How to buy a non-Chinese drone?

G M

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #262 on: October 15, 2021, 05:06:25 AM »
I'm thinking it is time for us to look into having a drone of our own.

I'm reading about the Feds buying Chinese made drones despite the security threat.

How to buy a non-Chinese drone?

Intended purpose?

How much are you willing to spend?

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #263 on: October 15, 2021, 02:39:50 PM »
Frankly not really sure-- roughly I would say the ability to know what is the other side of the hill in uncertain times , , ,  somehow it seems like a good idea.

Budget-- not really sure.  Don't want to waste money on a toy, I'm guessing it should have pretty good range/flight time, pretty good camera capability, be relatively idiot proof to fly,

This seems pretty cool-- but is it Chinese?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1d_ptE6yrc&t=283s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGKZjk51B88

G M

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #264 on: October 15, 2021, 03:13:37 PM »
Frankly not really sure-- roughly I would say the ability to know what is the other side of the hill in uncertain times , , ,  somehow it seems like a good idea.

Budget-- not really sure.  Don't want to waste money on a toy, I'm guessing it should have pretty good range/flight time, pretty good camera capability, be relatively idiot proof to fly,

This seems pretty cool-- but is it Chinese?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1d_ptE6yrc&t=283s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGKZjk51B88

DJI Magic is a Chinese company

I know a PI who had used drones for surveillance, I believe that’s the drone he uses for some roles.

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #265 on: October 15, 2021, 03:44:23 PM »
Am I peeing into the wind looking for non-Chinese?


G M

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #266 on: October 15, 2021, 04:42:15 PM »
Am I peeing into the wind looking for non-Chinese?

Quite possibly

ccp

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #267 on: October 16, 2021, 09:19:29 AM »
a couple weeks ago
we had a drone flying directly over my house and back yard
I could here it buzzing
then could see it .

we live next to a church parking lot
and after I caught it flying over us I could see it flying maybe ? 50 feet or so above the lot.

Of course if I bring it down I go to jail as per the FAA.


G M

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #268 on: October 16, 2021, 09:34:01 AM »
a couple weeks ago
we had a drone flying directly over my house and back yard
I could here it buzzing
then could see it .

we live next to a church parking lot
and after I caught it flying over us I could see it flying maybe ? 50 feet or so above the lot.

Of course if I bring it down I go to jail as per the FAA.

Yup. Federal law.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/32

Note that Federal laws are enforced or not based totally on the whims of TPTB.

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #269 on: October 17, 2021, 03:19:27 AM »
Is a drone an "aircraft" within the meaning of the statute?

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #270 on: October 17, 2021, 07:37:56 AM »
Is a drone an "aircraft" within the meaning of the statute?

(1) Aircraft .— The term “aircraft” means a civil, military, or public contrivance invented, used, or designed to navigate, fly, or travel in the air.

ccp

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yes a drone operator can fly over your house in NJ
« Reply #271 on: October 17, 2021, 09:28:58 AM »
if your lucky
you may be able to complain and get a disorderly charge against the operator
or perhaps an invasion of privacy - if you have a non see through fence.

otherwise you have NO rights:

https://www.nj.com/politics/2014/11/why_someone_can_fly_a_drone_over_your_house_in_nj_and_why_theres_nothing_you_can_do_about_it.html

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Crafty_Dog

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Re: Drones/UAV/UAS/Bots
« Reply #274 on: November 06, 2021, 08:39:41 PM »
Fk.

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Blacking Out Civilization With Robotic Terrorism
« Reply #275 on: November 11, 2021, 08:39:05 PM »
Blacking Out Civilization With Robotic Terrorism


 

 

By Dr. Peter Vincent Pry Wednesday, 10 November 2021

My new book "Blackout Warfare" warns that drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can be used to black out national power grids.

Now, according to an FBI and DHS memo recently reported in the press, in July 2020 a drone made a failed attack on the Pennsylvania electric power grid. The drone, trailing electrical conductors intended to short out high-voltage powerlines at a transformer substation, crashed on a roof before reaching its target.

The perpetrator has not yet been identified.

A similar attack using a small manned airplane blacked out Canada's Hydro-Québec electric grid in 2014. According to The Washington Post:

"Hydro-Quebec, Canada's largest electric utility, was hit with a crippling blackout at the start of the winter. Traffic lights went dark, and more than 188,000 customers lost power, including Montreal's McGill University Health Center. ... Power exports to the Northeast United States were cut. Industrial users were asked to slash production ... " (See "The Power And The Light," 2020.)

Military drones and armed unmanned aerial vehicles are in the process of revolutionizing warfare.

In 2020, for the first time in history, an Air Force of UAVs defeated a traditional army of tanks, soldiers, and manned jets, giving Azerbaijan decisive victory over Armenia in the long inconclusive Nagorno-Karabakh war, waged on and off for over 30 years.

An ongoing technological revolution in non-nuclear electromagnetic pulse (NNEMP) weapons is making these more powerful, more miniaturized and lighter weight, and deliverable by drones or UAVs. The marriage of NNEMP warheads to UAVs, preprogrammed or equipped with sensors to follow high-power electric lines and to target control centers and transformers, introduces a major new threat to national power grids.

A nonexplosive high-power microwave warhead, for example, can emit repeated bursts of electromagnetic energy to upset and damage electronic targets. Such a warhead, attached to a programmable drone or UAV, could follow the powerlines to attack numerous transformer and control substations, until its energy is exhausted.

Relatively small numbers of NNEMP drones or UAVs — perhaps only one capable of protracted flight — could inflict a long nationwide blackout. As reported in The Wall Street Journal, according to a classified study by the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, disabling just 9 of 2,000 U.S. EHV transformer substations could cause cascading failures that would crash the North American power grid.

Thus, NNEMP unmanned aerial vehicles might be able to achieve results similar to a nuclear EMP attack in blacking out power grids, though the NNEMP attack would probably take hours instead of seconds.

The technology for non-nuclear EMP generators and drones is widely available for purchase as civilian equipment which can easily be weaponized, even by non-state actors.

For example, one U.S. company sells a NNEMP device for legitimate industrial purposes called the EMP Suitcase that looks like a suitcase, can be carried and operated by one person, generates 100,000 volts/meter over a short distance, and can be purchased by anyone. NNEMP devices like the EMP Suitcase could become the Dollar Store version of weapons of mass destruction if turned against the national electric grid by terrorists.

A German version of the "EMP Suitcase" weighs only 62 pounds, easily deliverable by drone or UAV.

In 2020, Northeastern University's Global Resilience Institute (GRI) tested in an EMP simulator numerous electronic components vital to the operation of electric grids and other critical infrastructures. The GRI tests "confirmed the ability for non-state actors to outfit commercially-available platforms to conduct localized tactical EMI attacks against electronics that support critical systems ... identified the thresholds at which the functioning of representative electronics in common use across multiple infrastructures could become compromised, generating catastrophic outcomes.

"This includes, but is not limited to, disruption in cybersecurity safeguards for critical infrastructure to include key components of the electric power grid and telecommunications system."

GRI's tests of the non-nuclear EMP threat "confirm that a small EMI emitter that could be carried on a commercially-available drone or terrestrial vehicle, is capable of compromising electronic components, in common commercial use, at very low-energy levels from a considerable distance."

Most NNEMP generators have limited range, less than 10 kilometers. But if mated to a cruise missile or drone capable of protracted flight to target electric grid key nodes, the results can be spectacular.

For example, Boeing's Counter-Electronics High Power Microwave Advanced Missile Project (CHAMP) cruise missile can be viewed on the internet where CHAMP "navigated a pre-programmed flight plan and emitted bursts of high-powered energy, effectively knocking out the target's data and electronic subsystems." The U.S. Air Force has purchased CHAMP cruise missiles, deployed to Japan, reportedly to prevent North Korean missile attacks by "frying" their missiles, command and control, and power grid electronics.

Russia may still be the world leader in NNEMP weapons, as was the USSR during the Cold War. Russia's nuclear-powered cruise missile, the Burevestnik (Storm Petrel, NATO designation SSC-X-9 Skyfall), now under development, makes little sense as yet another missile to deliver nuclear warheads, as advertised by Moscow.

The Storm Petrel's engines, powered by a nuclear reactor, theoretically will give it unlimited range and limitless flying time for crossing oceans and cruising over the U.S. The Storm Petrel could be a nuclear-powered version of CHAMP, able to fly much farther and longer and armed with a more potent NNEMP warhead, electrically supercharged by the nuclear reactor.

Iran has demonstrated sophisticated UAVs and drones, using over 20 to make highly precise and coordinated attacks on Saudi Arabia's oil processing facilities on September 14, 2019. Such delivery vehicles could easily be armed with NNEMP warheads to make a less sophisticated version of CHAMP.

Iran is the world's leading sponsor of international terrorism, and Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard is the world's most powerful and sophisticated terrorist organization. The advent of Blackout Terrorism by UAV is inevitable.

The technological revolution in NNEMP weapons and UAVs threatens to become an electromagnetic Pearl Harbor for nations, like the United States, that fail to fully comprehend the threat and have not protected civilian critical infrastructures and military systems.

President Joe Biden's infrastructure bill spending trillions to "build back better" the nation's critical infrastructures proposes spending millions for more EMP protection studies. Someday, perhaps soon, the infrastructure bill will prove to be a tragic missed opportunity.

What is needed is not more studies, but a crash program to protect the U.S. electric grid, and 320 million Americans, from the looming existential threat that is Blackout Warfare.

Dr. Peter Vincent Pry is executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security.

https://www.newsmax.com/peterpry/military-drones-unmanned-aerial-vehicles-blackout-electromagnetic/2021/11/10/id/1044106/>

G M

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Hiding from Drones
« Reply #277 on: January 25, 2022, 05:06:46 AM »

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WT: US and ME allies plan joint drone force
« Reply #278 on: February 22, 2022, 03:43:29 AM »
U.S. Navy, Mideast allies plan joint drone force for region

BY ISABEL DEBRE AND JON GAMBRELL ASSOCIATED PRESS ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES | The U.S. Navy’s Mideastbased 5th Fleet announced Monday the launch of a new joint fleet of unmanned drones with allied nations to patrol vast swaths of the region’s volatile waters as tensions simmer with Iran.

Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, who leads the 5th Fleet, said in an interview that 100 unmanned drones, both sailing and submersible, would dramatically multiply the surveillance capacities of the U.S. Navy, allowing it to keep a close eye on waters critical to the flow of the global oil and shipping. Trade at sea has been targeted in recent years after the Trump administration torpedoed Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers signed in 2015.

“By using unmanned systems, we can just simply see more. They’re high-reliability and remove the human factor,” Adm. Cooper said on the sidelines of a defense exhibition in Abu Dhabi, adding the systems are “the only way to cover on whatever gaps that we have today.”

The admiral said he hopes the drone force using artificial intelligence would be operational by the summer of 2023 to put more “eyes and ears on the water.”

The Bahrain-based 5th Fleet includes the crucial Strait of Hormuz, the narrow mouth of the Persian Gulf through which 20% of all oil passes. It also stretches as far as the Red Sea reaches near the Suez Canal, the waterway in Egypt linking the Mideast to the Mediterranean, and the Bab el-Mandeb Strait off Yemen.

The high seas have witnessed a series of assaults and escalations in recent years, following former President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the nuclear deal and reimpose devastating sanctions.

A maritime shadow war has played out as oil tankers have been seized by Iranian forces and suspicious explosions have struck vessels in the region, including those linked to Israeli and Western firms. Iran has denied involvement in the attacks, despite evidence from the West to the contrary.

“It’s been well-established that Iran is the No. 1 in the primary regional threat we are addressing,” Adm. Cooper said. “There’s the ballistic missile, cruise missile and [drone] component, both in their capability and their mass proliferation, as well as well as the proxy forces.”

Iran backs allied militias in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen that give it a military reach across the region. As Yemen’s 7-year-old civil war grinds on, the Iran-backed Houthi rebels have dispatched bomb-laden drone boats toward Saudi waters that have damaged vessels and oil facilities, in response to the Saudiled military campaign against the Yemeni group. “What the Houthis are doing, it is an entirely completely different operation that’s offensively oriented,” Adm. Cooper said. “What we are doing is inherently defensively oriented.”

There has also been a recent string of tense encounters between Iranian and American naval boats in Mideast waters. The confrontations have underscored the risk of an armed clash between the nations.

Notably, however, Adm. Cooper said the U.S. has not seen such an episode in the past few months, as international diplomats — including some from Iran and the U.S. — attempt to resuscitate the tattered atomic accord in talks in Vienna.

“If you look back over the last couple of months, I would say it’s status quo,” Adm. Cooper said. “There have been some periods where they have had an uptick in activity. ... The overwhelming majority of these interactions are safe and professional.”

Iran’s mission to the United Nations did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The shared threat of Iran has prompted a rapid realignment of politics in the Middle East. In 2020, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain normalized ties with Israel in a series of U.S.-brokered accords, while Iran has been having talks with Saudi officials on neutral ground in Iraq.

Israel for the first time joined in a massive U.S.-led naval exercise in the region earlier this month, publicly participating alongside other Gulf Arab states with which it has no relations, including Saudi Arabia.

Crafty_Dog

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D1: Drones good idea for Ukraine
« Reply #279 on: March 04, 2022, 10:17:52 AM »
Send in the Quadcopters: Arm Ukrainian Citizens with Simple Drones
Ukrainians are already using consumer-grade drones to spot Russian forces. We should send more of them.
BY ZAK KALLENBORN
MASTER COORDINATION DIRECTOR, PROJECT EXODUS RELIEF
MARCH 3, 2022 02:35 PM ET

In a recent Facebook post, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense called upon citizens in Kyiv to help monitor the city for Russian soldiers—and particularly people with drones. “Do you have a drone? Then give it to an experienced pilot! Or do you know how to fly a drone? Join the joint patrol with Unit 112 of the Kyiv City Special Brigade!” It’s a great idea with tactical and strategic implications—and the United States and allied countries should help by sending simple commercial drones and spare parts to Ukraine. It wouldn’t cost much either: cheap off-the-shelf drones available on Amazon can be less than $100 (though higher-end drones can easily run a few thousand dollars each).

Such drones allow defenders to put eyes in the air, to look above buildings, trees, and other obstructions that limit line of sight, providing priceless information about an enemy’s location and forces. Drone operators can track Russian troop movements and activities, revealing vulnerable units and supply lines.

All this allows defenders to better plan and execute actions—the time and place for an attack, and the best locations to erect or strengthen barricades and other defenses. Situational awareness also enables more complex tactics, such as seemingly spontaneous swarming attacks in which defenders attack Russian troops with Molotov cocktails, simple sabotage operations, or just thrown rocks from all directions, then quickly disperse. Drones can also sound alarms about approaching forces, to help know where and when to run.

Of course, the information coming from a drone is put to best use by troops and leaders skilled and equipped to interpret, evaluate, and add the information into the military’s broader operating picture. But any airborne eyes are better than none for even the civil defense units that are being hastily assembled in Ukrainian cities. As fighting moves into urban areas, such groups are likely to find themselves in narrow spaces. Most groups likely lack even the most basic intelligence and surveillance capabilities of a conventional military, such as dedicated scouting units or personnel.


As U.S. forces facing the Islamic State learned, drones can do more than watch: they can be modified to drop grenades or antipersonnel weapons. Indeed, much of the Ukrainian military’s existing drone fleet consists of modified commercial drones, the Turkish Bayraktar TB-2 being a notable, successful exception. (Ukrainian officials have said they have received more TB-2s since fighting started.) Armed drones would allow civil defenders to carry out attacks at much longer ranges. The use of waypoint navigation – a drone flying a predesignated path based on GPS – means defenders may effectively have fire-and-forget missiles. Of course, given limited drone payloads, the harm would be relatively small and focused on softer targets like infantry.

But once Ukrainians demonstrate that a tiny aircraft might be carrying a lethal payload, Russian troops must worry others do too. Even without explosives, simply harassing and buzzing about Russian soldiers may distract or interfere. The soldiers may wonder if it’s a random civilian or the Ukrainian military preparing for an attack.

And in a war that will be won as much by feeding narratives with images and video, footage captured by drones can become ammunition for the defenders’ messaging campaigns. Videos and pictures can be uploaded online easily to platforms like YouTube or Facebook. Civilian drone operators are already doing so. The larger strategic value is to encourage broader resistance to Russian forces, increase the costs for possible Russian occupation, and complexity the battlespace. (Russia’s own drones have been surprisingly absent from the conflict.)

Encouraging civilians to support the military effort necessarily puts them at risk. Civilians will typically not even have basic military training and may make simple mistakes like standing in the open when throwing a Molotov cocktail. Drones can help reduce that risk. High-end consumer drones can be flown from miles away. That allows defenders to operated them from positions of relative security. Drones could be flown from cars, trucks, or other vehicles to readily flee.

There is some risk that using certain Chinese-made drones could help Russian forces spot Ukrainian operators. But reportedly, technology used to locate DJI drone operators only narrow to a radius of a few miles. In a crowded city, that’s meaningless. Likewise, Russian counter-drone systems may allow the same, though again it’s unclear how useful the systems are. Of course, individuals have to make their own decisions, and decide whether the risks outweigh the potential benefits.

There are definite strategic benefits. One net strategic effect is to complexify the battlefield. While Russian forces worry about continued fighting with conventional Ukrainian forces and the inherent challenges of urban conflict, drones add one more worry. Even if the direct effects are minimal, Russia would need to devote some attention and resources, to potentially include air-defense assets. Depending on the Russian ability to respond, drones may also lower Russian morale, providing a clear illustration of the inability of Russian forces to pacify Ukraine. Enough drones could feed a belief among Russian forces of being in a panopticon in which they may be watched at any time, anywhere but never know exactly. The United States experience in the Middle East is illustrative. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, has frequently warned about how cheap drones have flooded American forces and contributed to casualties.

Of course, the mechanics of drone provision need to be worked out a bit. Simply handing out drones on the streets of Kyiv is not the best idea. Rather, the United States should work with and through the Ukrainian military, as the military already appears to be organizing and supporting irregular forces. The military may use those networks to distribute drone assets to areas in need. The United States and allies also need to consider the type of drone, and particularly whether they have geofencing. Generally, geofencing is a good thing – it prevents drones from flying over sensitive areas like military bases or nuclear power plants– but Russian forces may be occupying those locations.

Drone delivery should also be supported with training, perhaps pointing to publicly available drone tutorials. This should include basic flight operations, and safety issues. Advanced training could cover integration of drones within broader urban and civil defense tactics. In addition, the Ukrainian military may modify or provide training on how to modify drones to carry different payloads or resist jamming or other defenses. In limited cases, the Ukrainian military may even provide bomb-laden drones to civilians, provided they trust their safety and capability.

As everyday Ukrainians take up arms in defense of their homeland, that defense should take to the air. Send a thousand Ukrainian eyes buzzing through the sky.



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« Last Edit: April 24, 2022, 06:13:29 AM by Crafty_Dog »

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Drones in Ukraine
« Reply #284 on: May 01, 2022, 01:59:03 PM »

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FAA on Drone ID
« Reply #285 on: May 03, 2022, 04:17:29 AM »

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D1: Microwaves vs. Drones
« Reply #286 on: May 11, 2022, 09:50:03 AM »
Drones Shooting Microwave Rays Could Be the Drone Killers of Tomorrow
Moving away from vacuum tubes is making microwave weapons smaller and smarter.
Patrick Tucker
BY PATRICK TUCKER
TECHNOLOGY EDITOR
FEBRUARY 13, 2022
DRONES
CYBER
The military has been looking at a variety of ways to take down swarms of enemy drones, from hacking and jamming to lasers deployed on ships and trucks. Directed microwave energy has emerged as a promising option, but the bulkiness of conventional microwave weapons makes them a pain to lug around, and they aren’t as precise as necessary for an environment with friendly and enemy drones.

On Monday, California-based company Epirus announced their solution to this problem: a microwave-emitting pod that can sit on the bottom of heavy-lift drones and quickly down sudden drone swarms.

The Leonidas Pod, as they call it, builds off the company’s other, land-based microwave weapons, which use gallium nitride transistors to produce microwaves, rather than clunky magnetron vacuum tubes, of the sort that militaries have been using in radars for decades (and that likely create the waves in your microwave oven.) Gallium nitride microwave radar technology emerged as a research area around 2004, but didn’t make its way into counter drone technology until more recently.

That switch, from magnetron tubes to solid-state transistors, allows you to maintain a durable microwave beam with less power and in a much smaller container—small enough, in the case of the pod, to fit on the bottom of a heavy drone—Epirus CEO Leigh Madden told Defense One.

Contrast that with the Air Force Research Lab’s most cutting-edge weapon, the Tactical High Power Operational Responder— THOR—or the Army’s high-powered microwave weapon, both of which have performed well in tests but must be stored in 20-foot plus shipping containers.

And Madden says the new system has another benefit the current ones don’t: Because the handling is software based, the operator can better discriminate between friend and foe. “We can take sensor inputs from blue force trackers in the military, or IFF transponders on an aircraft, we can actually put a [protective sphere] around that friendly system and wherever that system goes, that [sphere] follows. That's driven by the software-defined ability of the system” he said.

Defense Department officials saw three demonstrations of the land-based version of the Epirus microwave last year. Madden says that they are working with the DARPA Warden program (developing algorithms for radio frequency applications) and the Army's Rapid Capabilities Office, among others, to bring the project to fruition.


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Coming soon
« Reply #290 on: July 20, 2022, 10:32:02 AM »

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Drone captures Mex Cartel Camp
« Reply #293 on: September 03, 2022, 10:38:45 AM »
Drone Captures Images of Mexican Drug Cartel Camp
By Allan Stein September 1, 2022 Updated: September 2, 2022biggersmaller Print

This is the fifth and final article in a series on illegal drug and human smuggling along Arizona’s border with Mexico. (Read: parts one, two, three, and four)

ARIVACA, Ariz.—The first gunshots seemed to come down the mountain on the other side of Arizona’s border fence with Mexico, just east of Arivaca, where rival drug cartel factions battle to the death for supremacy.

Sam, my security guide, listened closely as more shots rang out.

They were hunters, no doubt, though not the kind you would typically expect.

“Where exactly do you think the shots are coming from?” I asked Sam nervously from the back seat of his pickup truck.

“I think they’re to the right,” Sam said, focused on the nearest mountain. “They could be on top of that big peak as well.”

It’s not as if we were invisible, clambering noisily up the winding dirt fire road in the border zone known as the California Gulch, part of the Coronado National Forest in southern Arizona.

Our arrival in Sam’s gargantuan white Chevy Silverado on the sweltering morning of Aug. 25 was about as clandestine as a bullhorn in a public library.

“They could be warning shots”—for us, Sam said. “But this is where they’re coming. Right here.”

Sam is the pseudonym he uses to conceal his identity and that of his security company in Arizona. He’s been threatened by the Sinaloa Cartel for conducting border-watching activities. He now fears for the safety of his employees and family.

Epoch Times Photo
Actual drone still footage shows a Mexican drug cartel faction (red dot) camped out just over the U.S. border near Arivaca, Ariz., on Aug. 25. (Courtesy of a private Arizona security company)
Below our position, the unfinished Trump border wall and fence stretched east and west for miles, then abruptly stopped. On the U.S. side of the border, cattle grazed among dry clumps of grass or basked in the imperfect shade of sparse shrubbery, swatting flies with their tails.

The jagged peaks on the Mexican side of the steel-grated border fence loomed green and majestic. Strange, though, how nature doesn’t immediately reveal its secrets. Hidden among the Las Guijas Mountains are some of the worst elements of the Sinaloa Cartel, Sam said.

“How strong is your stomach?” Kyle, Sam’s security specialist, had asked me the day before.

The fact that I enjoyed watching gory horror movies was good enough for Kyle to share an actual cell phone video of a man being mauled by two pit bulls in a Mexican border town not far from us.

Unfortunately some things cannot be unseen.

Kyle said that kind of cartel brutality is common in cities and towns on the Mexican side of the border fence.

Epoch Times Photo
Kyle, a private security specialist in Arizona, operates a surveillance drone using an electronic console just east of Arivaca, Ariz., on Aug. 25. (Allan Stein/The Epoch Times)
“These guys are battling for control of the Sinaloa Cartel. You have fights within fights,” said Sam, speaking both from experience and professional intelligence gathering.

Sam believes cartel mayhem eventually will spill across the U.S. border in military force, bringing death and destruction to Americans—but not if a coalition of private citizens, law enforcement, and security firms that he envisions has its say.

The real battle, he said, is not about winning hearts and minds.

It’s about matching intel with intel, using superior surveillance techniques and equipment to beat the drug and human smugglers.

For this purpose, Sam’s company recently acquired a $33,000 JTI-branded drone which they frequently use to conduct border reconnaissance missions for clients and law enforcement.

Epoch Times Photo
Close-up drone footage shows a rival drug cartel faction member talking on a hand-held radio in an enclose on the Mexican side of the border fence east of Arivaca, Ariz., on Aug. 25. (Courtesy Arizona private security company)
The drone is a beast of versatility equipped with high-definition and thermal cameras, and high-powered zoom lenses.

Kyle operates the drone from the pickup bed using a console and laptop computer for imaging purposes. The drone has a maximum range of five miles traveling at speeds over 48 mph hundreds of feet above the ground. Batteries are interchangeable and last 45 minutes on a single charge.

You can hear the drone yet rarely see it at higher altitudes housed in fortified gray plastic with four propellers to carry it aloft.

Epoch Times Photo
Closeup drone footage shows a heavily armed Mexican drug cartel faction member walking near Arizona’s border with Mexico on Aug. 25. Seconds later, the man took aim at the drone with his rifle hoping to shoot it down. (Photos courtesy Arizona private security company)
Sam and Kyle’s mission today was to seek out and photograph nearby cartel encampments on Mexico’s side of the border fence.

Kyle took the drone out of a suitcase, then placed it in the middle of the fire road as he prepared for take-off. With the push of a console button, the drone whirred to life, propellers spinning like a supercharged weed-whacker.

Up—up—and away the drone went with the turn of a joystick.

Kyle monitored the action on the console screen while Sam watched on a laptop computer. The rugged mountain terrain below seemed alien in both viewfinders, taking shape when Kyle maneuvered to a lower altitude.

“My guess is there are two factions here,” Sam said. “One is trying to keep [the other] from pushing east, the other west. We think they’re on the peak right below us—oh, there they are!”

One of the factions is Los Chapitos, whose founder is Ivan Archivaldo-Guzman Salazar, alias “Chapito,” a Mexican narco trafficker and son of imprisoned druglord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

Guzman was head of the Sinaloa Cartel until his arrest and extradition to the United States in 2017.

Epoch Times Photo
An Arizona private security firm keeps high-tech equipment, including a surveillance drone, secure in heavy-duty suitcases in the back of a company pickup truck on Aug. 25. (Allan Stein/The Epoch Times)
The other faction is El Mayo, led by suspected Mexican drug kingpin Ismael Maro Zambada Garcia.

Sam said both factions currently are at war to control the entire Sinaloa Cartel on Arizona’s southern flank.

High above the nearest mountain less than a half mile away, the drone’s camera suddenly spied two blue tarps spaced about 25 yards apart. In one of the tents, a man could be seen talking frantically on a hand-held radio.

As Kyle zoomed in closer, the screen showed another man in body armor walking out of the bush, carrying what appeared to be an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle—definitely cartel.

“We found his [expletive]!” Sam shouted and gave Kyle a fist pump, but it was too soon to celebrate.

At that moment, the man looked up and saw the drone.

He raised his rifle, and took aim.

Epoch Times Photo
Sam, owner of a private security firm in Arizona, keeps watch with binoculars over the U.S. border wall with Mexico on Aug. 25. (Allan Stein/The Epoch Times)
“He’s trying to find out where [the drone noise] is coming from,” Sam cried. “Whoah! Whoah! Get out of there!”

Kyle hit the joystick and the drone moved to a safe distance—just before the man could get off a shot.

He was now running in our direction. “He’s got a ways to go to get to the border wall,” Sam said.

But it was time to get out of there—fast. Though getting out would be harder than getting in.

Along the escape route were unforeseen twists and turns and a few dead ends that took us closer to the border fence and the rifle-wielding cartel member.

Finally, after many false starts and turns, we found our way back to the main fire road and out of danger.

Sam and Kyle had promised a “hot spot” of cartel activity today, and they delivered.

For Americans living near Arizona’s southern border wall, however, it keeps getting hotter every day.

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90% of drones spy for China
« Reply #294 on: September 12, 2022, 04:14:25 AM »
https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/18885/china-drones-dji-spying

National Security Threat: China's Eyes in America
by Peter Schweizer
September 12, 2022 at 5:00 am

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The Chinese company DJI controls nearly 90% of the world market for consumer and commercial grade drones.

The excellent reporting on DJI by Kitchen tracks efforts by the company to lobby against passage of a bill called the American Security Drone Act (ASDA), now before Congress, to outlaw federal government use of DJI products entirely. What is the risk? Not only the data gathered by the drones themselves, but everything collected by the mobile app with which users control their drones and manage their DJI accounts. Like many other mobile applications, this includes a user's contacts, photos, GPS location, and online activities.

Every DJI drone in the skies above America is as good as a hovering Chinese spy.

DJI is engaged in a fierce lobbying effort to prevent passage of the ASDA bill. So fierce that they have enlisted police officers from local jurisdictions to come to Washington and lobby congressional staffers about how great DJI drones are for their cash-strapped local forces.... DJI lobbyists from firms like Squire Patton Boggs, Cassidy & Associates, and CLS Strategies are taking no chances. The company spent $2.2 million in lobbying efforts in 2020 and $1.4 million last year on lobbying activities, according to OpenSecrets.org.

Much as they are doing with products such as solar panels, the Chinese realize that cornering the market in an area where reach equals access is critical to their long-term plans to dominate. Their pattern includes stealing technology they cannot create themselves and using any means available to aid in that theft. Therefore, every bit of access to information they can scour is of more value to them than the product used to get it.

Understanding these patterns is central to recognizing that the Chinese do this to their own people as well.... [through] many different forms of what we may baldly call blackmail.

The Wilson Center, a bipartisan think tank in Washington, reported in 2017 that a small community of PRC students and diplomats have engaged in intimidation tactics ranging from intelligence gathering to financial retaliation... It was just those sorts of concerns that led the Trump administration to create the "China Initiative" within the Justice Department in 2018. This effort generated plenty of convictions of Chinese nationals in the US for technology theft and other forms of industrial espionage. The Biden administration ended the program this year....

China's strategy has for years hinged on infiltration by some Chinese scientists and researchers working abroad in the US and other western nations, with threats against their Chinese relatives as leverage for them to do so.


The consumer and commercial grade drones made by the Chinese company DJI account for nearly 90% of the market. These popular products are cost-effective, easy to fly and operate, and send every byte of data they gather to servers in China. Every DJI drone in the sky is as good as a hovering Chinese spy. Pictured: A police sergeant in Exeter, England pilots a DJI drone on May 25, 2021, as part of security preparations for the G7 Summit that was attended by US President Joe Biden and leaders of the other G7 countries. (Photo by Geoff Caddick/AFP via Getty Images)
Chinese intelligence gathering in the US takes many forms and has different purposes. Most Americans are familiar with some of their means and tactics, but not with how widespread and persistent they are.

Americans may know about the malware contained in that infernal TikTok app that their children use. They may know the Chinese military's cyber-intelligence service was likely behind many of the largest hacks of Americans' personal data that have ever occurred. They may know from the news how US defense and intelligence policy have sanctioned Chinese telecom giant Huawei, and counseled America's allies to reject Chinese-architected implementations of 5G networking, due to evidence that China has planted backdoors in commercial networking equipment designed to allow the Communist regime in Beijing to conduct surveillance and cyber-espionage anywhere in the world.

Do they know it extends to consumer-level drones?

Cybersecurity expert Klon Kitchen, writing for The Dispatch, recently detailed the problem with DJI, the Chinese company whose consumer and commercial grade drones control nearly 90% of the market. These popular products are cost-effective, easy to fly and operate, and send every byte of data they gather to servers in China. For this reason, they are banned by the US military and Department of Homeland Security, though still used by the FBI and increasingly by local police as "eyes in the sky" during crime events. FBI use of DJI drones is especially ironic considering bureau director Christopher Wray has warned often of the dangers to western commerce posed by the Chinese, most recently in London.

The excellent reporting on DJI by Kitchen tracks efforts by the company to lobby against passage of a bill called the American Security Drone Act (ASDA), now before Congress, to outlaw federal government use of DJI products entirely. What is the risk? Not only the data gathered by the drones themselves, but everything collected by the mobile app with which users control their drones and manage their DJI accounts. Like many other mobile applications, this includes a user's contacts, photos, GPS location, and online activities.

To repeat: Every DJI drone in the skies above America is as good as a hovering Chinese spy.

Like other Chinese government-controlled companies such as Huawei and Hikvision, makers of the artificial intelligence systems used in facial recognition and in the repression of China's Uyghur minority, DJI is adept at playing the Washington game. The company is engaged in a fierce lobbying effort to prevent passage of the ASDA bill. So fierce that they have enlisted police officers from local jurisdictions to come to Washington and lobby congressional staffers about how great DJI drones are for their cash-strapped local forces. As Kitchen points out, the ASDA bill is directed only towards a federal ban on these drones, but DJI lobbyists from firms like Squire Patton Boggs, Cassidy & Associates, and CLS Strategies are taking no chances. The company spent $2.2 million in lobbying efforts in 2020 and $1.4 million last year on lobbying activities, according to OpenSecrets.org.

These lobbyists are using the classic argument that it would be wrong to ban the federal government's use of our product because so many other people are using it. This is doubtless the dilemma currently facing the app stores of Apple and Google regarding the TikTok app, another Chinese product. The TikTok app has been identified by cybersecurity professionals as containing a keystroke logger, and both Apple and Google have been pressured by the Federal Communications Commission to remove it from their app stores. "Can we really ban something that so many people are happily using?" they must be asking themselves.

Therein lies the heart of the Chinese approach. TikTok was a mobile device application that no one was asking for, yet it became an overnight sensation in most western countries. We really must acknowledge, and grudgingly admire, the brilliant insight shown by the app's creator company, Chinese-government-controlled ByteDance, into the psyche of large numbers of young, western people. The TikTok app, pitched initially as a way to share and watch silly dance video clips, has been adopted by younger "woke" schoolteachers to "out" themselves as scheming, haranguing social justice warriors intent on smuggling sexual ideology into their classrooms and bragging about it.

This adds some context to Republican Sen. Rob Portman's (R-OH) exasperation at a Senate hearing about the ASDA legislation, where he said:

"Again, given what the FBI has told us, what the Commerce Department has told us, what we know from reports, I can't believe we have to write legislation to force US agencies to ban the use of Chinese-made drones, particularly where the servers are in China, where the Chinese government is a part owner and a supporter of this particular company."

The Chinese approach is to "capture" elite institutions and individuals in the US: politicians, leading universities, large pension funds, social media, and Hollywood among them. My latest book, Red Handed, documents this capture in the areas of politics, diplomatic and business consulting, Big Tech, academia, and on Wall Street. There is insight in the Soviet-era statement, attributed to Lenin, about capitalists "selling us the rope with which to hang them." Yet, it is the Chinese that understood how to sell the rope at a good price.

Much as they are doing with products such as solar panels, the Chinese realize that cornering the market in an area where reach equals access is critical to their long-term plans to dominate. Their pattern includes stealing technology they cannot create themselves and using any means available to aid in that theft. Therefore, every bit of access to information they can scour is of more value to them than the product used to get it.

Understanding these patterns is crucial to recognizing that the Chinese do this to their own people as well. As Gordon Chang's recent piece for the Gatestone Institute discusses, the Chinese Communist Party maintains tight control of Chinese people overseas through many different forms of what we may baldly call blackmail. The many stories of intimidation of Chinese students and academics in the US who speak up about human rights abuses by China, or in support for democracy in Hong Kong and Taiwanese independence, all demonstrate this.

Universities have put up with this in exchange for foreign funds for decades. They are only recently being confronted by the costs of this indulgence. For example, the former chairman of Harvard University's Chemistry and Chemical Biology Department was convicted by a federal jury for lying to federal authorities about his affiliation with the People's Republic of China's Thousand Talents Program and the Wuhan University of Technology (WUT) in Wuhan, China, as well as failing to report income he received from WUT.

The Wilson Center, a bipartisan think tank in Washington, reported in 2017 that a small community of PRC students and diplomats have engaged in intimidation tactics ranging from intelligence gathering to financial retaliation. "A Preliminary Study of PRC Political Influence and Interference Activities in American Higher Education" examines PRC influence in American universities.

It was just those sorts of concerns that led the Trump administration to create the "China Initiative" within the Justice Department in 2018. This effort generated plenty of convictions of Chinese nationals in the US for technology theft and other forms of industrial espionage. The Biden administration ended the program this year, citing concerns that a broader approach was needed and in response to lobbying by Asian American groups that it unfairly targeted scientists with connections to China. Further, Assistant Attorney General Matthew Olsen also said he heard concerns from the academic community that prosecutions of researchers for grant fraud and other charges was having a "chilling effect."

Be that as it may, China's strategy has for years hinged on infiltration by some Chinese scientists and researchers working abroad in the US and other western nations, with threats against their Chinese relatives as leverage for them to do so. This will remain a counter-intelligence problem regardless of what the effort to expose it is called.

It is all part of the pattern. Call it sabotage by remote control.

Peter Schweizer, President of the Governmental Accountability Institute, is a Gatestone Institute Distinguished Senior Fellow and author of the new book, Red Handed: How American Elites are Helping China Win.

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