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Drone strike

Old 18th Apr 2016, 00:28
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Researchers say FAA are overblowing risk

This article says FAA is overblowing the risk.

Researchers say FAA is really overblowing risk posed by small drones | Ars Technica


I'd like authorities to simulate how feasible it is to purposefully position a large drone in the path of an aircraft engine on climbout or finals using a drone's live on-board camera as the positioning mechanism.

The test need not turn into a DIY video for the bad guys.

A one engine shutdown is relatively benign so two drones would have to take out two engines, simultaneously, to reliably bring an airliner down.

Mickjoebill

Last edited by mickjoebill; 18th Apr 2016 at 02:09.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 00:49
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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Quote from mickjoebill:
"A one engine shutdown is benign so two drones would have to take out two engines simultaneously to reliably bring an airliner down."

Oh, good - that's alright then! Phew, that's a relief...
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 01:35
  #43 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Chris Scott View Post
Quote from mickjoebill:
"A one engine shutdown is benign so two drones would have to take out two engines simultaneously to reliably bring an airliner down."

Oh, good - that's alright then! Phew, that's a relief...
No any impact is not alright.

The point is that terrorists are not likely to attempt a single engine strike as it won't cause a crash.

And the chances of a successful execution of two drones destroying two engines is unknown, but probably highly unlikely.

Mickjoebill
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 02:56
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Fittingly, I had my own first encounter with a drone today....

While relaxing on the lakefront at my FL retreat, I heard what I first thought was a neighbour's hedge strimmer. I then realised a drone was flying up and down the lakeshore at about 150'.

It buzzed off, but I have to say, I really resented the invasion of privacy.... what if the G/F had been on deck with me???

5 mins later, it re-appeared.

I tell you, if I had had a shotgun with me, I'd have TAKEN THE F***ER out!!!
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 03:16
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This is all a bit hypothetical and tongue in cheek but...
I'm having a spot of bother understanding the logistics of all this...

Surely during take-off and landing the aircraft is changing altitude rapidly. In order to deliberately fly a drone into a specific area on an aircraft, one would need to know that altitude and I don't think the iPlayer controlled versions have lead computing built in.

Point two would be this, a drone in the hover waiting to crash into an aircraft would be blasted out of the way by the pressure wave surrounding and leading the aircraft.

No point at all using bird strikes as an example... birds were around airports long before airports became airports and the fact that Airport Managers like to keep the grass short just encourages more of the wrong types of birds.. If a bird in flight senses an aircraft it goes into avoidance mode immediately and their ACAS / TCAS is a damn sight more efficient than anything humans have come up with... Sadly though against Sully's 200 tonne Airbus the bird has no chance because the Aircraft doesn't know the rules and even if it did it wouldn't be allowed to fly to those manouvres and the bird expects the aircraft to co-operate in the avoidance movement.

Here's a thought... fly a iPhone drone directly into an evening murmuration of starlings... on second thoughts though please dont... the starlings will be hacked to pieces because the drone doesn't know the rules and starling murmurations are a sight to treasure.

I really dont think your average [email protected] lout armed with a no-doubt-stolen-iPhone drone represents any danger at all to air traffic except perhaps to microlights pilots who should be able to swat them away anyway...

With the bigger b*ggers then perhaps there is a problem but I am tempted to believe that if you have spent say 5000 or more you are probably going to be fairly selective about your launch, cruise, and recovery logistics.

As for that big spidery thing having an argument with a turboprop, the prop(s) would chop it up into thousands of pieces before spitting them out to be blasted away by the slipstream...

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Old 18th Apr 2016, 04:42
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Just a quick search online...........For $12000 (a fool and his money is soon partying) and you have a max gross of 29.9 lbs More than the average goose.

Feathers, meat and hollow bones vs metal motor, camera, and other parts?

The "no threat" argument doesn't hold up.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 05:00
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"A one engine shutdown is benign so two drones would have to take out two engines simultaneously to reliably bring an airliner down."
Have the YouTube videos showing multiple drones flying in orchestrated patterns been linked here yet?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShGl5rQK3ew
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 05:04
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I'd like authorities to simulate how feasible it is to purposefully position a large drone in the path of an aircraft engine on climbout or finals using a drone's live on-board camera as the positioning mechanism.
I'd wager it would be fairly straightforward. Particularly for aircraft on a glideslope. The aircraft may be moving quickly, but drones can be quite quick and maneuverable.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 05:22
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Plus I can think of more nefarios actions possible.

Wouldn't be hard to get one of these horrible things to "jump the fence" and get something airside. I know there has been a recent case of people dropping off "goodies" into HMP Manchester, so goodness knows what else you can drop off.

They either need licensing or banning.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 06:07
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As most of these drones are controlled on defined frequency bands, would it not be possible to jam signals from the remote control in the vicinity of airports? Would jamming those frequencies cause any disruption to those currently used in aviation? Terrorists used model aircraft radio controls to activate bombs back in the 1970s and a number of them got an unwelcome surprise when their devices went off in their faces due to signals from an "unintended" source.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 06:13
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"Initial indications from an initially miniscule research set suggests that drone strikes do not hurt aircraft. As more collisions happen, I'm quite sure that eventually one will go down an engine. That will be more indicative of whether there is actually a problem " .

Well on that basis, we might as well stop educating people about the dangers of FOD then.....after all, what could possibly happen to the engine when one ingests solid matter.

I am sure you have seen the results of bird strikes on both the airframe / engine and the damage that results..one of my most memorable being a seagull vs Harrier.....went in through the nose and then through the front px B/H resulting in a right rudder restriction....so a drone I would suggest is equally capable of inflicting serious damage.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 06:15
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The question is, can you ban them?

All you need is 4 motors, 4 propellers, a raspberry pi with a GPS and a few other off-the-shelf bits and bobs, and off you go.

Without banning radio controlled cars and STEM education I don't see any practical way of outlawing them. Besides, they potentially have lots of legitimate uses. You might be able to stop a Maplins hooligan, but anybody truly intent on malice will still be able to do whatever they want. You would affect literally millions of hobbyists worldwide, but without really solving the problems.

The potential for small drones to be used in military conflict means that I think we'll soon need to sort out some robust defences against them. Any reasonably large nation could field a million drones each capable of carrying half a kilo of explosive a thousand miles. Just keeping them out of the hands of civilians isn't going to be enough:

BBC NEWS | Europe | Model plane goes transatlantic
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 06:18
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As most of these drones are controlled on defined frequency bands, would it not be possible to jam signals from the remote control in the vicinity of airports?
Remote controlled aircraft are controlled by a radio signal. Drones can often maneuver independently using GPS. Also, some of the modern frequency-hopping spread-spectrum remote control systems are far more resistant to interference than the old 35mhz systems and similar.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 07:19
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I fly a drone

Some thoughts:

- If this was a drone (I don't think it's yet confirmed) then it was either a malicious act, (which sadly can't be discounted) or a staggeringly stupid one.

- GPS, miniaturisation and battery technology mean Pandora's box is open.

- There are regulations about drone flying. In the UK, there's a brief summary here.

- Some drones (the more recent ones from DJI, the most prolific manufacturer) are programmed with exclusion zones near airports so that they won't fly there. If the operator attempts to fly into an exclusion zone , the drone will descend.

- My assumption is that a drone strike would Not Be a Good Thing. So I avoid flying anywhere I think I might find aircraft below 400' (the legal upper limit for drones in the UK). However, from time to time I've seen helicopters buzz over at lower altitudes.

- I suspect that laws will be brought in making it mandatory for the drone electronics to include a signal that can be picked up by ground / airborne radar.

Meantime, for the pro pilots here, please remember that the vast majority of drone pilots are responsible and we are incensed by the few who behave stupidly.

Last edited by msjh; 18th Apr 2016 at 09:17.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 07:34
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These drones are controlled by a radio frequency, why can it not be a requirement that a radio licence is required when you buy one.
After all I am required to have a radio licence for my light aircraft (20 for 3 years),
When I had a yacht the same was needed. If one misuses the drone the licence is withdrawn. and a lifetime ban is enforced.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 08:19
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Leaving aside the capability of a UAV to take down a plane, if you have a strike of any kind on take off which could involve engine damage, windshield damage, radome damage etc etc you're quite possibly looking at a return to departure airport and a huge inconvenience to everyone, expense, etc etc. Then the repair issues to sort, even if they are fairly minor.


That in itself is worth trying to prevent, I would imagine.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 08:20
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Originally Posted by Walnut View Post
These drones are controlled by a radio frequency, why can it not be a requirement that a radio licence is required when you buy one.
After all I am required to have a radio licence for my light aircraft (20 for 3 years),
When I had a yacht the same was needed. If one misuses the drone the licence is withdrawn. and a lifetime ban is enforced.
These machines are usually controlled with radio signals on the 2.4GHz band. By international treaty this band is open and unlicensed because of the number of things it's used for. If you made it licensable then you'd also need licenses for your mobile phone (if it had wifi capability), your household wifi router, your chordless phones, your car's remote door locks (some of them - some operate on 433MHz), all bluetooth devices, some TV remote controls (not many as most are infra red, but there are some wifi ones), a hundred million remote controlled toys etc etc. So it's not something you'd do lightly.

But even if you DID do it you wouldn't be able to enforcement. Almost all of this stuff is manufactured overseas and imported by individuals (not through a wholesale-retail trade). Introducing licensing requirements would mean precisely zip to these manufacturers - you could nop more shut it down by regulation than you could prevent estate agents importing viagra to address their self-esteem issues. In the 1960s/70s the 27MHz band was licensed to model flyers, but was used in other countries for CB radios. Use of 27MHz CB radio in the UK was a criminal offence, but it proved impossible to prevent people importing and using the gear. Eventually model flying was grudgingly given the 35MHz band as a public safety issue. It's deja vu all over again!

Incidently - I just heard some BALPA official on the radio news talking about the "solid metal batteries" in drones. Are all professional pilots this ignorant, or is it just that you pilot chappies and chapesses make a point of electing the especially brainless ones as officials in your association? Is this really the kind of image you wish to portray?

PDR
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 09:08
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Originally Posted by PDR1 View Post
These machines are usually controlled with radio signals on the 2.4GHz band. By international treaty this band is open and unlicensed because of the number of things it's used for. If you made it licensable then you'd also need licenses for your mobile phone (if it had wifi capability), your household wifi router, your chordless phones, your car's remote door locks (some of them - some operate on 433MHz), all bluetooth devices, some TV remote controls (not many as most are infra red, but there are some wifi ones), a hundred million remote controlled toys etc etc. So it's not something you'd do lightly.

But even if you DID do it you wouldn't be able to enforcement. Almost all of this stuff is manufactured overseas and imported by individuals (not through a wholesale-retail trade). Introducing licensing requirements would mean precisely zip to these manufacturers - you could nop more shut it down by regulation than you could prevent estate agents importing viagra to address their self-esteem issues. In the 1960s/70s the 27MHz band was licensed to model flyers, but was used in other countries for CB radios. Use of 27MHz CB radio in the UK was a criminal offence, but it proved impossible to prevent people importing and using the gear. Eventually model flying was grudgingly given the 35MHz band as a public safety issue. It's deja vu all over again!

Incidently - I just heard some BALPA official on the radio news talking about the "solid metal batteries" in drones. Are all professional pilots this ignorant, or is it just that you pilot chappies and chapesses make a point of electing the especially brainless ones as officials in your association? Is this really the kind of image you wish to portray?

PDR
Out to make friends in the pilot community, then? ;-)

The batteries may not be what we commonly think of as metal, but they are solid and dense and it's easy to imagine that they are not engine/cockpit window/radome friendly.
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 09:20
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AAIB are now on the case:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/t...heathrow-event
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Old 18th Apr 2016, 09:26
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So far there is no proof that this even was a "drone", unless you can take the word of the stressed and fatigued pilot (going by all the lovely fatigue complaints recently). Even they only said it might have been a "drone". Still, if you want to disregard the obvious difficulties of identifying something of that size and at those speeds correctly, keep overreacting. I am reminded of that recent incident involving the light twin whose pilot had "definitely" hit a drone, parading the photographs as absolute proof- only to be proven wrong. Anyhow, gives you something else to whinge about.......
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