Drones pose a problem for prisons, being one of many methods employed to smug drugs, cell phones, and other items to prisoners. In cases where drones have been caught, officials have reported spotting drones dropping items for specific recipients within the prison yard. Some locations have threatened to shoot down any drones that get too close as a result, but one prison in the Channel Islands has employed a more reliable method: it has installed a ‘force field’ around itself to stop drones from operating over its land.
The force field isn’t exactly like the kind you find in science fiction — drones will still be able to enter the space in or around the prison. However, the system will disrupt its ability to communicate with its operator, causing it to fail and fall before it reaches the actual prison grounds or, depending on the model, to ‘return to home’ to whomever is operating it.
According to The Times, this prison will be using a system referred to as the ‘Sky Fence,’ the name being in place for obvious reasons. The system, which was designed by Richard Gill, features a nearly 2,000ft-tall electronic fence of sorts that will surround the jail. This ‘fence’ won’t be visible to anyone looking, of course — think of it as an invisible fence used to keep pet dogs from exiting a particular yard.
If someone tries to fly their drone into this space, the video feed will be cut (if there is one) and manual control of the drone will be severed. Because of the way these drones are designed, most drones will automatically turn around and retrace their steps, in a manner of speaking, until the signal is restored, effectively resulting in a ‘wall’ that the drone will not cross. The prison will utilize 20 of the signal disruptors and, if everything goes according to schedule, will launch them in July.
SOURCE: The Times