Wednesday, October 12, 2016

US General in Europe Wants Anti-Drone Weapons - Defensetech

US General in Europe Wants Anti-Drone Weapons - Defensetech: The commander of U.S. Army Europe said he wants anti-drone weapons to counter potential threats from Russia, among other equipment.

Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges said he would welcome any number of systems to do the job, from newer non-kinetic technologies to older, Cold War-era equipment such as the Avenger, a Humvee equipped with a launcher housing eight FIM-92 Stinger missiles, as well as the German-made Gepard, a twin-33mm cannon mounted on a Leopard tank.

Hodges said officials at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, are evaluating non-kinetic technologies. While he didn’t specify the name of any new products, Army officials have tested Battelle’s DroneDefender, a shoulder-fired weapon that zaps drones with radio waves and when paired with an Israeli-made radar can detect unmanned aerial vehicles from several kilometers away.

“I know there’s a lot of work being done on non-kinetic means and I am confident that we are going to have some other systems coming down the road … but I need something now,” the general told reporters this month at an Army conference in Washington, D.C. “We didn’t worry about [short-range air defense] over the last several years because there was not a threat,” he said. “Now you look at the UAVs, I need a counter-UAV capability.”

But obtaining and fielding even the older equipment will take some time.