SPRINGVILLE, Utah — U.S. officials have long worried that weaponized drones could be used to hit “soft targets” like sporting events and political rallies, as allegedly happened in Venezuela earlier this month.
A Utah-based company, however, gave NBC News an exclusive look at a potential answer to killer drones.
Backed by Boeing and other investors, the airspace security company Fortem Technologies is developing a “good” drone called the DroneHunter, and has made sales to the U.S. Department of Defense, major airports and sports stadiums.
The DroneHunter, says Fortem CEO Timothy Bean, “patrols the airspace, detects any unwanted objects in the airspace, enemy drones or other robotics, pursues them, and then safely captures them and tows them away to a safe location.”
In a Utah field, TODAY National Investigative Correspondent Jeff Rossen watched as Bean put the DroneHunter to work against an “enemy” drone loaded with real explosives that was launched from the depths of a nearby forest.
Within seconds, the DroneHunter, a silvery spider about three feet wide with multiple propellors had detected the enemy in its airspace and had begun to follow it — all without any human control.
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