The Olympics are a huge event that attracts the attention from people all over the world. Top notch athletes in various winter sports compete to take the gold medal home as they each represent their country. For this winter’s Olympics, athletes will battle it out in South Korea.
Since the Olympics are such a popular event, there will need to be extra security. Having any type of breach or disturbance in the games could cause major problems and prohibit an athlete from doing well in their event. Since drones have gained popularity so much over the past few years, South Korea has enlisted a new system specifically focused on taking rogue drones out of the sky.
Drones progressively improve in their technology capabilities and also their photo and video taking capabilities. Offering smoothe flights with little to no noise and the ability to capture images and recordings from a bird’s eye view makes drones an ideal tool for filming. A professional drone pilot is already used for many sporting events, but the Olympics are not one of them and South Korea has taken additional security measures to ensure that drones are not recording any events over the course of the two weeks that they are held.
When thinking about rogue drones interfering with the Olympics, simple videos and pictures were not the top concern of the reportedly 60,000 security personnel. Rogue drones being flown by terrorists could potentially carry weapons such as bombs and hurt athletes as well as spectators. Without drone security, the potential threat would be huge and possibly fatal.
The area over the Olympic games has been declared a no-fly zone for unauthorized aircraft. The Pyeongchang Winter Olympics security staff have also put to use a drone detection radar that was developed by the Korea Advanced Institute for Science And Technology, which will likely play a huge role in keeping the sky over the Games safe from any drones that may be in the sky without permission.
As of now, there is no worry of specific terrorist groups that would likely target the Olympics. Since South Korea’s unpredictable neighbor, North Korea, is also participating in the Winter Games, they are not concerned of an attack. There have also been no specific rumors of a plotted attack by any other groups.
In addition to the radar, there will also be a few other tools used to keep the skies over the Games safe from rogue drones. A signal-jamming gun will likely also be used to interrupt the signal between a drone and it’s pilot. This would make it where the pilot could no longer navigate the drone and would cause the drone to have a safe landing. If the radar detection and signal-interrupting gun do not work, then the security team would deploy a helicopter to shoot the drone out of the sky.
A third tactic that will be used is a “drone catching drone.” This drone is much more powerful than those that are purchased by consumers. This multi-rotor machine is equipped with nets that can be deployed on other drones to smother and disable them quickly.
South Korea has taken large steps to ensure that the Olympic Games are a safe event. With such a massive security team and various technologies, their goal is to ensure athletes as well as spectators stay safe throughout the two week event. With special focus on the skies above the event in addition to the crowd on the ground, everyone in attendance should feel comfortable and secure while the Games take place.