Gatwick, drones

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  • Gatwick, drones
  • scruff9252
    Member

    This must be the start of the busiest time of year / weekend for airports with folk going home for xmas. For the price of a couple of drones you could shut down an entire airport for 14 hours and counting… It’s really quite startling!

    It doesn’t have the sound of some kids mucking about – more of an organised antagonism.

    eddiebaby
    Member

    Yeah, who needs yellow vests!

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    Linked to plans to open emergency runway for operational use?

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    Mind you if we think this is bad wait ’til March 30th next year…

    Premier Icon ads678
    Subscriber

    Mind you if we think this is bad wait ’til March 30th next year…

    Oh bugger, I’m flying to Geneva that day. No wonder those fights were cheap…..

    Premier Icon jam bo
    Subscriber

    Irrelevant.

    They could follow any one of the drones.

    again, you are assuming that who-ever is doing it is trying to retrieve the drones.

    philjunior
    Member

    I have to admit my initial thoughts were is it windy enough to lift plastic bags…

    Still, I hadn’t thought of the fact they can follow pre-programmed routes. There might not even be a pilot there any more.

    Considering their incredible potential to be used in an offensive capacity, mightn’t they be treated like firearms, and the owners require licensing, and the devices themselves, registration?

    Bit of an over-reaction. If you can’t see why, I challenge you to a duel. You can have the drone, I’ll have the gun.

    While I’m at it, it would be nice to find the culprits and charge them for the costs incurred, but I doubt many individuals have that sort of money.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    You can have the drone, I’ll have the gun.

    I can tell you which of those two is more likely to bring down a 747 that’s just gone past the point they can’t abort a take off if we’re both stood outside the perimeter fence of an airport.

    The genie really is out of the bottle with drones. By the time those in charge realised the potential mayhem they can cause, the opportunity for meaningful regulation had passed.

    sharkbait
    Member

    Considering their incredible potential to be used in an offensive capacity, mightn’t they be treated like firearms, and the owners require licensing, and the devices themselves, registration?

    Could the same be applied to RC planes, helicopters or even balloons?

    Nico
    Member

    Could the same be applied to RC planes, helicopters or even balloons?

    Or those RC model cars. Or yachts! Time for a big crack-down. It’ll make buying a tube of evo-stik like child’s play.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    yes, sharkbait, but planes and ‘copters require a fair amount of skill to fly and until very recently offered no autonomous flight options (plus they cost a fair amount).

    Premier Icon bikebouy
    Subscriber

    Considering their incredible potential to be used in an offensive capacity, mightn’t they be treated like firearms, and the owners require licensing, and the devices themselves, registration?

    Drones are registered, the pilots too. There is a whole bucket of Law governing Drones.

    Ask rone, he’s a drone pilot.

    Trouble is, as with any Law, it’s only applicable if the perpetrator is caught.

    fatoldgit
    Member

    My first thoughts when I heard about this was
    “ probably deliberate, and surprising it took so long to happen “

    Bear in mind decent size machines can be picked up for less than the cost of decent light and controlled from a car 400 – 500 metres away, so it’s very difficult for the authorities to find the culprit (s) if they don’t try to retrieve the machine ……..

    But it will be right headache to prevent copy catting now 😟

    Premier Icon peekay
    Subscriber

    It is quite interesting to look on Flight Radar 24, set the time to 2000 yesterday evening, increase the playback speed to 300x and watch how the flights are lining up for approach/departure at Gatwick and are suddenly diverted and the airspace cleared.

    Then pick any other day in the past and compare the business of the London/SE airspace to today.

    philjunior
    Member

    I can tell you which of those two is more likely to bring down a 747 that’s just gone past the point they can’t abort a take off if we’re both stood outside the perimeter fence of an airport.

    I think you’d have a hard time with anything you could legally get hold of bringing down anything with 3 spare engines (guns and drones).

    Of course either could be used to shut down an airport (if you were a total lunatic).

    cchris2lou
    Member

    My wife and kids flights from Montpelier to gatwick canceled.
    And not able to change bookings till Sunday

    moose
    Subscriber

    COTS drones have been used by IS in Syria to attack Russian aircraft while on the ground, small charge of explosives and aim for the vertical stabilizer.

    Wouldn’t be hard to hit a massive target like an airliner. Scary times.

    sharkbait
    Member

    It was a question, but I completely agree re helicopters, although planes are not as difficult and are cheaper than a drone (£150 full kit ready to fly). Plus, theoretically you could simply take off, point it in the right direction and walk away!

    Undecided about whether drones should be licenced….. maybe.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    I think you’d have a hard time with anything you could legally get hold of bringing down anything with 3 spare engines

    Genuinely – I’m surprised we’ve not yet to drones used as a swarm weapon to bring down a commercial aircraft.

    Fly enough of them across the flight path of an aircraft and it’ll be like running into a flock of albatross – and that’s without considering what payload they might have in terms of additional bits of hard metal.

    moose
    Subscriber

    I think you’d have a hard time with anything you could legally get hold of bringing down anything with 3 spare engines (guns and drones).

    You don’t go for the engines, you go for the control surfaces.

    sharkbait
    Member

    that’s without considering what payload they might have in terms of additional bits of hard metal

    Exactly. We know that an engine can survive a frozen chicken attack but I wonder if a drone with an aluminium/steel bar strapped underneath would destroy an engine if it was sucked in?
    That’s a very scary thought.

    sharkbait
    Member

    You don’t go for the engines, you go for the control surfaces.

    Easier to go for the engines though – and a destroyed engine certainly has the potential to bring a plane down when it’s taking off.

    legend
    Member

    Scary times.

    Not really

    I wonder if a drone with an aluminium/steel bar strapped underneath would destroy an engine if it was sucked in?
    That’s a very scary thought.

    They also test against a rotor blade failure, which would have far higher energy than random objects going in. So not really that scary either

    moose
    Subscriber

    Maybe, but they have drills for engine failure, so you’d need to have a bloody damn good knowledge of when is the exact vulnerable moment to cause maximum damage to cause a crash. Either way, a COTS drone with a small IED would cause havoc, but there’s just too many available now, especially on the second-hand market. They’re not hard to weaponise and can be bought in a pretty untraceable manner.

    I’ve seen a 12v combi drill go through MD11 GECF6-80C2D1F engine, it wasn’t pretty. Fortunately most of it went up the bypass, and not into the compressor/turbine/combustor as it was left in the bellmouth at start up, but I can’t really see that happening if an engine was either at approach or descent into land.

    aP
    Member

    Anyone read The Diamond Age by Neal Stephenson? All sounding quite familiar now.
    One of my colleagues has been at Gatwick since 5:30 this morning waiting for her flight home for Christmas. But at least the other one who normally can’t get home for Christmas (fog, snow, industrial action) is going via Stanstead.

    philjunior
    Member

    Swarm might work, but again a single drone hitting an engine would be hard work, hitting a control surface? They’re at the back you know.
    There is a great deal of redundancy in the control surfaces of modern airliners, so this would cause disruption if successful rather than bringing down the airliner.
    I won’t speculate on what could be carried by a drone to bring down an airliner, of course it would be possible but piloting a drone into any part of an airliner travelling at 200mph+ in the first place would be quite tricky.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    You lot worry me over how creative and knowledgeable you on creating a terror attack….!

    moose
    Subscriber

    Really? Didn’t realise they were at the back, I thought they were in the nose, controlled by a steering wheel.

    Like I said, been used to good effect elsewhere by people with a similar ideology. Even disruption is a good tool, that Airport is now haemorrhaging money. Who knows, could just be some dickhead hobbyist.

    moose
    Subscriber

    @matt_outandabout

    We have to wargame this at work, it’s one of the possible threats of both conventional and non-conventional warfare now. I work within rotary aviation, where they are a bloody pain. But we obviously share ground and airspace with large fixed-wing aircraft.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    I just read a bit of William Gibson, sci-fi and then think about stuff 🙂

    aP
    Member

    Dog pod grid, anyone?

    dannyh
    Member

    I’ve seen a 12v combi drill go through MD11 GECF6-80C2D1F engine, it wasn’t pretty.

    Nor, I imagine, was what the boss said to the culprit when he/she was identified(!)

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    European Air Traffic control says situation ‘very fluid’ but estimates 1600 as soonest time for re-opening following today’s drone incidents.

    Blimey – that’s nearly 24 hours.

    Massively effective if it was deliberate.

    Genuinely – I’m surprised we’ve not yet to drones used as a swarm weapon to bring down a commercial aircraft.
    Fly enough of them across the flight path of an aircraft and it’ll be like running into a flock of albatross – and that’s without considering what payload they might have in terms of additional bits of hard metal.

    Well that exactly how surface to air and air to air missiles work. They don’t aim to hit an aircraft, they explode in close proximity and the shrapnel causes the damage that brings the aircraft down, so in a way the shrapnel is acting like a drone swarm.

    Easier to go for the engines though – and a destroyed engine certainly has the potential to bring a plane down when it’s taking off.

    Well not one engine, they’re designed to safely take off with an engine out…two engines then you’re in trouble.

    Exactly. We know that an engine can survive a frozen chicken attack but I wonder if a drone with an aluminium/steel bar strapped underneath would destroy an engine if it was sucked in?
    That’s a very scary thought.

    Well not frozen chickens…they’re thawed…a frozen chicken would ruin an engine if ingested. Large engines are designed to withstand the ingestion of multiple and simultaneous 12lb Canada Geese (unfrozen) and the engine has to be able to maintain max continuous thrust for a minimum of 5 mins after ingestion to simulate a safe go around and landing in the event of the ingestion happening at take-off. Obviously that is ingestion of soft body debris, hard body debris is much more challenging and the risk there is that it causes a fan blade to fracture which would cause an instant engine shut down. Again, the engine is designed to withstand such an event safely, but if it happened to both engines, then you’re in trouble.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    BREAKING: There has been another drone sighting near Gatwick Airport in the last hour, says Gatwick chief operating officer Chris Woodrooffe.

    I wonder how many false sightings they’re getting now?

    edlong
    Member

    Just adding to the earlier speculation as to the possible motivation behind this, that Jada Nazi Britain First woman was arrested (on an outstanding warrant) at Gatwick yesterday…

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