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Drones at sea: how to detect & defeat threats

Last updated on

June 24, 2018


    When you think of superyachts, long days gently navigating the seas and enjoying incredible luxury on board might spring to mind. But while superyachts can represent the perfect aquatic getaway, they are subject to an increasing number of safety and privacy concerns.

    Some of these are centred around drones. They have spiked in recreational and commercial use over the past few years. It is in an industry which has been slated to reach the global value over £79 billion by the year 2030.

    With more drones in the sky, those that work in the superyacht sector are wising up to the fact that the privacy and security of crew and passengers have the potential to be compromised by these unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). The increased numbers of drones are augmented by advances in drone technology. This means that specifications such as payload and range have improved considerably.

    Easier access to UAVs

    Drones are no longer typically the preserve of specific sectors such as construction or agriculture, and the police or military. The explosion of affordable drones on the market has meant that it is easier than ever before to buy a UAV and fly it.

    What does this mean for super yachts and the crews which sail them? Ultimately, that a higher state of alert than ever before must be implemented. Which type of drone threat is of more concern will depend on the nature of the particular superyacht, and the identity of the passengers sailing.

    Malicious drone activity

    There is evidence that drones have found their way into the hands into terrorists who can use them as UAVs which are intended to carry dangerous weapons, including poisonous gas or bombs. On these occasions, a superyacht can in effect be slow moving targets for malicious drone users intent on causing harm, underlining just how important drone detection is on the seas.

    Then there is the possibility that privacy could be compromised by drones with fitted cameras. Parties such as the paparazzi are known to go to extraordinary lengths to get that ‘money shot’. Superyachts’ status as magnets for the rich and famous means that in many cases it is important to guard the privacy of these high net worth guests in order to retain their appeal as a way to get away from the busy spots on land.

    The advantages of Aerospace

    One of the most prevalent drone mitigation systems on the market is AeroScope, designed by leading drone manufacturer DJI. What can it offer to superyacht crews? The ability to read telemetry data from DJI aircraft in a range up to 20km. Among the important bits of information which can be gathered by AeroScope is the UAV serial number.  It also provides the position of the drone, its speed and latitude. Crucially, it shows the location of the ground controller.

    All of this data can be crucial in deducing whether a drone poses an immediate or future threat to a superyacht. It also offers a way to apprehend malicious drone operators in the event that illegal acts are being committed. Offering help to law enforcement agencies.

    The fixed and portable solutions which make up part of AeroScope – such as the sensors themselves – are allied with software which provides an easy to use interface which can simplify drone detection practices. The hardware is designed to stand up to adverse weather conditions and even lightning. This means it can be relied upon as a long-term investment. This improves security on board a superyacht significantly.

    At COPTRZ we have picked out AeroScope as the most effective drone detection system for superyacht crews to use. We are able to offer not only the supply of the system but also installation, related training and servicing.

    Commenting on the current demand for drone detection from the superyacht sector, Steve Coulsen, MD at COPTRZ said:

    “Superyachts and their passengers can come to the attention of malicious operators with bad intentions. Thankfully, the superyacht industry is switching on to the rapid increase of drones in the skies. They are beginning to recognise the very real threat which they can potentially pose. We have already seen drone detection become more of a priority for superyachts at marinas across the world.”

    So let’s allow the superyacht industry to focus on all the good things drones can offer. Things such as stunning photography and videos of the vessels at sea. Let’s ensure that the bad side of drone use is negated using drone detection systems.

    Free eBook: Detecting Drone Threats in Public Safety

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    Speak to the drone detection experts:

    Contact us here at COPTRZ. Alternatively, call our friendly team on 0330 111 7177 to discuss your drone detection needs. Or, you can contact us via email at if you’d prefer.

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