What would you do if you realized a drone was invading your privacy? The Personal Drone Detection System is your first line of defense. Read more
This project's funding goal was not reached on July 15, 2014.
About this project
Project Update #2: Video Interview on KGW News Channel 8 (NBC Portland, OR news affiliate)
On May 8, 2014 a drone shooting high definition video crashed into a high rise building in downtown St. Louis. Who was flying it and why they were shooting video so close to the building is still unknown.
Could this drone be flying around your building and invading your privacy in the near future?
Drones are becoming more available and can be operated by anyone who can fly a Remote Controlled plane. You may have noticed how many drones are being sold on Kickstarter, DIY Drones and Amazon, just to name a few.
In fact, CEO of California drone maker, 3D Robotics, sells about 2000 autopilot systems per month to customers around the world who want to build their own drones. He estimates that one Chinese competitor, DJI Innovations, sells at least 10 times as many drones.
From just these two companies, over 300,000 drones are being put into the skies this year alone. This is alarming!
According to Senator Feinstein on the 60 Minutes video below, the FAA has no rules to regulate the use of these smaller drones and any drone regulation will not be updated until 2015, at the earliest.
We keep seeing all sorts of stories about drones in the news. We read about near misses with aircraft and drones crashing into the ground, as happened in New York City last October and as shown in the video below.
Drones are becoming more capable all the time and this is why it's alarming. They fly with payloads like still cameras, video cameras, infrared detectors, thermal detectors, among other things, and they are already being used for surveillance.
Though there are legitimate uses for domestic drones, there is still concern about invasion of privacy and surveillance by various entities. Groups like the ACLU are concerned about your privacy and the future of drones in America.
Luckily, we at Domestic Drone Countermeasures have been working on protecting your privacy from drones and cameras on drones for over a year now. In the past year, we developed hardware that can detect drones and have filed patents to safeguard our technology. The patents are currently being converted from provisional patents to full patents. You may have seen us on:
The intent of DDC's Personal Drone Detection System is not to counter military drones. They fly too high and are too sophisticated. Our intent is to keep your privacy safe from your neighbors and people you may not know who are flying small drones near your home or office. The Personal Drone Detection Systems are intended to counter small, personal drones with cameras and other sensors that are not being regulated.
The first step in countering drones is to detect them. That is why we need your help. Our first prototype detection systems are effective at identifying drones in the lab, but we need more real world testing scenarios. Below is a video of Early Testing of Prototype Systems.
Basic Personal Drone Detection System
The Basic Personal Drone Detection System consists of three boxes: a Primary Command and Control Module and two Detection Sensor Nodes. These three boxes create a mesh grid network that can triangulate moving transmitters.
The Primary Command and Control Module offers a simplified user interface via WiFi, such as through your tablet, smartphone or PC.
If a signal is not purposely ignored by you, then the system assumes that the rogue transmitter is hostile and alerts you to its presence within the mesh grid. It sounds an alarm (which can be disabled) or sends a message to your tablet or smartphone. This allows the system to notify you, even if you are not home.
The software is designed to reduce false triggering as much as possible. Software updates will continue to be available in order to reduce false triggering based on field results.
The Primary Command and Control Module is based on the Linux operating system running on APlus Mobile's MotherBone™PiOne™ open source software platform.
The module and nodes utilize a mesh grid network that only communicates within itself, but the Primary Command and Control Module can communicate with your personal WiFi network as an isolated device. Neither the module nor nodes extend your personal WiFi network so your personal WiFi network is not susceptible to outside hacking or infiltration through the mesh grid.
Why it Works
The Drone Detection Grid is essentially a custom wireless mesh grid network and its advantages include:
- The more nodes you install, the larger your Detection Grid becomes.
- Detection Grids are "self configuring;" the network automatically incorporates a new node into the existing structure without needing any adjustments by a network administrator.
- Detection Grids are "self healing," since the network automatically finds the fastest and most reliable paths to send data, even if nodes are blocked or lose their signal.
Wireless Detection Sensor Nodes are easy to install and uninstall, making the Detection network extremely adaptable and expandable as more or less coverage is needed.
The Personal Drone Detection System sensor network is expandable to include additional Detection Sensor Nodes to provide large area coverage. Additional Sensor Detection Nodes can be purchased to increase the size of your wireless mesh grid. This enables scaling of the detection system automatically as described in Wikipedia here:
Command and Control Modules can be linked together to form a larger coordinated detection array.
The Primary Command and Control Module can typically communicate with nodes up to 200 feet away.
Each Detection Sensor Node can typically detect drones within 50 feet in all directions. Frequency detection range is 1MHz - 6.8GHz.
In order for us to continue with this project, we need your help to fund and field test the first production models. The first users are our Alpha Testers, and we really need your feedback. We are offering a deep discount for your feedback. Your help will assist us in improving the product and overcoming any hurdles. Your feedback is invaluable, and we will work closely with you to get valid results.
The 2nd generations models (Beta) will incorporate the lessons learned from the Alpha Test group and will be available after Alpha testing concludes.
July 2014: Kickstarter concludes
November 2014: Delivery of Alpha Test Units
January 2015: Alpha Test concludes
March 2015: Incorporation of Alpha Test results concludes
April 2015: Delivery of Beta Units
May 2015: Delivery of International Beta Units
Thank you for checking out our Kickstarter project. We will keep you all updated as the campaign progresses. For more information, please visit our website at www.ddcountermeasures.com
Risks and challenges
First of all, this patent pending technology will not become available without the support of concerned citizens like you.
As with all new technology, evolution is required. Your will system will not look like the prototypes you see here. It will have evolved into something more appropriate for the general public.
With your help, we can get the first Alpha systems into the field and tested for their overall coverage and effectiveness. A challenge is a lack of quality feedback, but we will personally assist the Alpha Testers obtain valid results.
We at Domestic Drone Countermeasures (http://www.ddcountermeasures.com/) and APlus Mobile (http://aplusmobile.com/) have been developing complex hardware solutions for ten years and we are confident we can incorporate your feedback quickly and effectively.
It is critical that we make the public aware of this technology. Frankly, the more Detection networks that are in the field, the more effective the systems will ultimately become for everyone.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
So what does it do once it detects a drone? Set off an alarm? Send you a text/email alert. Scramble the signal?
Yes, right now the system sets off an alarm and notifies you. What you do after the alarm is up to you. No, it does not scramble the signal, nor interfere with the drone in any way.
When you say drone, are you referring to all remotely controlled vehicles, fixed wing aircrafts, multi-rotors, land based vehicles, water vessels, or just airborne vehicles?
A "drone" is any moving device within the detection grid that is transmitting telemetry (i.e.: video, sound, etc.). Our system detects all known telemetry transmission frequencies. The software attempts to determine if the moving transmitter fits the profile of a drone.
So your system is only interested in drones which are transmitting video, sound etc. What if the drone is only recording video, sound etc. on say a GoPro or equivalent, but not transmitting? Surely it would not be detected?
A drone must transmit back to the operator in order for the operator to control it from a remote location (i.e.: out of sight), even if it does have a GoPro attached. Drones basically transmit telemetry of some sort, even if it is not a video feed.
We are just reporting what other people are saying in the news. If you don't like what we're doing, please don't buy a system. But don't deny that opportunity to someone else.
What is stopping [drone operators] from detecting you and zapping the boxes you create or putting on jammers? All very real questions that need answers before you throw away 8500$ of someone's money.
"Zapping" and jammers are illegal. Damaging our equipment is just as illegal as our equipment damaging a drone. Our technology does not interfere with drones at all. So far, we are just detecting its presence, and letting citizens know it is nearby. If someone wants to override our equipment, they must really want to stay hidden for some unknown and likely nefarious reason.
The jogger is not inside the detection grid. The system attempts to ignore things that are passing by the outside of the grid unless it stops and loiters.
Yes, we have actually limited the detection range to be more appropriate for personal home use. You don't want to be detecting the entire neighborhood providing numerous false triggers. It is only interested in your personal space. In fact, 50' may be too large for your residence or apartment. That is part of what the Alpha testers will determine. Increasing detection range specifically for drones will come with software maturity and system evolution.
- (33 days)