An American company is looking to beat out tech frontrunners in the growing anti-drone industry after being accepted into a major counter-UAV contest.
Department 13, a Maryland-based firm, was recently chosen to compete in the Countering Unauthorized Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-UAS) Challenge in August.
The company’s signature software suite is known as MESMER. The system uses “snooping and surveillance software that provides automated detection and finessed mitigation strategies that can be selected to function autonomously or with a man in the loop,” according to a company news release.
“Put more simply that means drone sniffers can be actively monitored by people or left for days at a time to detect, record and drone activity.”
Counter-drone firms will face off during the live flight test to determine which competitor can best take down drones – the winner takes home prizes worth $100,000.
“Critical technology infrastructure, military bases, public buildings, sport stadiums, power stations, offshore oil and gas platforms. Political leaders are all vulnerable to drone attacks. ISIS have already used drones to launch attacks against civilian and military targets in the Middle East, so the threat is real and should not be under-estimated,” said CEO Jonathan Hunter.
The MESMER software platform operates as a stand-alone system or on top of existing hardware solutions. “MESMER provides automated detection and finessed mitigation strategies that can be selected to function autonomously or with a man in the loop,” a company report stated.
“MESMER’s detection stage uses cognitive techniques for blind signal detection and characterization to determine the existence of threats.”
The Defense Department asked Department 13 to participate in the Black Dart counter drone test last year. “The MESMER technology allows a single operator to capture, defeat and neutralize a single drone or a multiple drone swarm attack, rendering every drone within the defined area inoperable.” The company also recently launched the “Drone Intelligence and Forensic Service” marketed to prisons, border control and drug enforcement agencies.
A recent study predicts the emerging market will to grow to a billion-dollar industry within six years with predicted compound annual growth rate of 23.89 percent across 2017-22.