The new U.T.SEC – Unmanned Technologies & Security Expo & Conference – had its successful debut on 2nd and 3rd March 2017. A great mix of visitors and congress delegates, half of them from countries other than Germany, came to Exhibition Centre Nuremberg for the world’s first exhibition and conference focusing on security by and against drones.
Held for the first time, the event was able to attract 26 exhibitors from Germany, Austria, Italy and the Czech Republic to Nuremberg, Germany. Visitors operating predominantly in areas such as public security, emergency services, energy and forestry, plant and equipment protection and other vertical industries obtained high informative insights through the exhibiting companies and 25 conference presentations.
“Launching a new trade fair is always something special. On both days of the exhibition and conference we received a great deal of positive feedback from exhibitors and visitors, so we are very pleased that this very promising concept has got off to such a good start” -Thomas Preutenborbeck, Director Exhibitions at Nürnberg Messe
Official partners to the exhibition and conference are UAV DACH e.V., the German-speaking association for unmanned aircraft in Europe, and VfS, the association for security technology. DRONEII.com was proud to be the official sponsor of this unique format.
In our conversations three major topics stood out:
1. Secure drone operation
Before even thinking about countermeasures or anything, it is important to exploit the regulatory framework to manage safe drone operation while providing enough room for flexible and scalable business models.
Education and certification are the first steps. The best regulation, however, is useless when the law can be broken without consequences. An operator license in combination with a unique drone ID and geofencing features to prevent illegal intrusion into sensitive areas will help in 99% of all cases. Or does it? Currently, reality looks different because intrusion must not necessarily mean the attack of a power plant, embassy or military facility – drones can easily spy out industrial research sites by simply looking through the window or drop wifi-sniffer on a roof, which brings us to the second point.
2. Security against drones
The Expo demonstrated a broad portfolio of what’s possible to fend off rogue drones today. Everything from detection, identification and localization of a drone to active countermeasures were showcased and demonstrated in the fly-zone right outside the expo hall.
It was impressive to see how effective these systems work at a very early stage of the counter-drone market or how Ingo Seebach, COO and Co-Founder of DeDrone put it: “We are in minute 2 of the game – there is an exciting time ahead of us.”
When talking about counter-drone measures, worst-case scenarios are the basis of any discussion, which on the one side appears to be quite pessimistic but justified on the other since we talk about a new type of thread. In Europe, we live in relatively peaceful and civilized countries and are soon exposed to warfare methods (like currently in Iraq and Syria). This disparity of means can cause massive damage to people, infrastructure and society. The thread will remain abstract until the first attack – protection will soon become essential.
Apart from all the radars, optical and acoustical sensors, jammers, EMPs, etc. there is another way how drones can help to create a safe(r) environment.
3. Drones for security
Using drones for security measures is far from new – devices developed for military purposes found their way into governmental applications and now arrive in commercial business models. The omnipresent dual-use of platforms and sensors, of course, goes both ways, which makes it not surprising to meet well-established manufacturers of the commercial market like Yuneec and Velodyne there as well.
Now, why are drones such a desired solution for applications in security? Well, flexibility is amongst the top statements, right before live-footage and cost savings. Using drones for perimeter security is a game changer and will soon become part of every security strategy in sensitive areas like embassies, power plant, research hubs, large companies etc.
Using drones for law enforcements, in firefighting, ambulance services and the like will additionally provide great benefits for the society on a global scale and will also act as a positive multiplier to reduce prejudices against drones as such.
The next U.T.SEC will take place on 8 and 9 March 2018 at Exhibition Centre Nuremberg.
Learn more: https://www.utsec.de/en