Drone RF (radio frequency) jammers are a form of counter-UAS (unmanned aerial systems) device that are designed to disrupt drone threats by blocking the communications link between the aircraft and the operator’s GCS (ground control station).
How Drone Frequency Jammers Work?
The devices work by emitting signals at the same frequencies used by the drone equipment but with greater strength. These stronger signals drown out the legitimate communications between drone and GCS, leaving the aircraft flying “blind”. Common frequencies targeted by drone signal jammers include:
DUET XL Drone Signal Jamming Device by IXI Electronic Warfare
4G & 5G cellular frequencies
Types of Drone Signal Jammer
The response to being affected by drone signal jamming will depend on the type or model of aircraft. Some may land immediately, or stop flying, go into hover mode, and then return to a predefined “home” location. Others may simply crash.
Drone RF jamming devices are available in a number of form factors and may be designed to offer specific forms of protection. Handheld drone jammer guns are built with a directional antenna and are used by operators to target a specific drone threat that has been identified. Other types of drone RF jammer, including portable, body-worn and fixed-site units, are designed to provide omnidirectional protection over a volume of airspace.
Directional drone RF jamming devices can also be cued by a radar or electro-optical-based drone detection system to form an active counter-drone surveillance system that reacts to threats and points the device in the desired direction.
Disadvantages of Frequency Jamming
Drone RF jammers may not be effective against fully autonomous drones that do not rely on communications between aircraft and operator, and so these counter-drone systems may include other forms of threat mitigation such as GPS jammers and kinetic effectors.
Signal jamming technology should always be in accordance with local laws and regulations to avoid possible legal consequences heightened by the fact that the intentional jamming of communication signals can interfere with other electronics devices. This may not only violate telecommunications regulations, but also potentially interfere with critical systems used by emergency services, posing risks to property and the public.