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Michigan Tech's anti-drone drone snatches drones in mid air

Safety drone fires a net at its prey before dragging it to safety.
Daniel Cooper, @danielwcooper
January 13, 2016
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Drones are in the mainstream now, and for every good drone operator, there's a nefarious one looking to do something nasty with theirs. A team of researchers from Michigan Tech is hoping to prevent disasters by building an anti-drone drone that can shoot a net to trap and catch its prey in mid-air. The project, led by Dr. Mo Rastgaar, was born out of the idea that using snipers to shoot drones made no sense if they were carrying harmful substances. For instance, the drone found on the roof of Japan's prime minister back in April 2015 was carrying radioactive material which could have been scattered around the surrounding area.

It's not the first time we've seen a drone with a net, since Tokyo's police is testing an airborne trawler net to take hostile UAVs to safety. France, meanwhile, has crafted a drone that will chase down the rogue pilot to ensure that they're arrested before they can use the device to cause trouble. As drones become more of a public policy issue, expect to see such gear becoming an ever-present element in law enforcement's kit bag. Although, if this net-firing model ever makes it into production, we're secretly excited to see it in action.

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