September 2021, several systems for the detection of drones were tested at Oslo Airport Gardermoen.

Detection and countermeasures will be the topicsThe emerging drone threat - UAS Norway hosts Security Summit

The security threat from drones is the focus of the media and authorities this autumn. UAS Norway is advancing its third Security Summit to mid-December.
Hans O. Torgersen

– We see that there is a growing need to understand that drones can be perceived as a security threat for certain actors and certain environments. We focus on this to simply increase the level of knowledge. Seen in the light of the situation we are in now, it has been further updated, says Anders Martinsen, CEO of UAS Norway.

Martinsen will not share details about the programme, which will be shared with the participants, but says that there will be lectures by, among others, Interpol, the  Norwegian police, Avinor and the company Red-6. In addition, several international capacities will be represented.

In addition to its own Security Summit, UAS Norway has twice organized security conferences together with Interpol, Norwegian police and Avinor. One of the conferences, Idex 2021, was held at Oslo Airport Gardermoen. Several systems for both detecting drones and rendering them harmless were tested there.

In June this year, an Interpol conference, Ines 2022, was organized in Oslo on the police’s use of drones.

– There is a common desire to spread the knowledge we have built up through these events at Idex 2021 and Ides 2022, and there are also reports that we believe are important to share. Our goal is simply to bring together relevant environments that need to get a joint update on what is now the picture, not only in Norway, but internationally on drone detection, the need for airspace control and countermeasures.

– Who can attend the security conference?

– This will be a closed event where we invite those who have a need, whether they work with critical infrastructure or work with security-related issues where drones can be important. We have a separate website where you can apply to participate, and then we make an ongoing assessment of the actors who sign up.

The drone situation has not been the focal point in Norway only after many alleged observations of drones at critical infrastructure both in the North Sea and on land.

– Denmark has recently focused on this through its Homeland Security conference, which shows that this is not just a Norwegian, but an international focus area.

Suppliers of systems for detection and countermeasures will also be represented at the security conference.

– What kind of systems will be demonstrated?

– We cannot go into specific types and systems other than that this is technology, which, on the same lines as what Norway has already recognized, is good enough to save lives in Ukraine through the support schemes there. We see that the same technology is more than good enough to protect and be able to secure airspace control around both airports and critical infrastructure in Norway. That type of technology will also be demonstrated and discussed at this security conference.

In Norway, too, the Norwegian Armed Forces and other actors have systems in operation that can give them an overview of what is happening in the airspace.

– But now we now see that especially some of those who own critical infrastructure may lag a little behind. They should now assess whether they have the type of need for airspace control, i.e. not countermeasures, but airspace control that enables them to simply find out what is happening around them.

– Civil and private owners of critical infrastructure are free to put into operation systems that can detect entry into the airspace. But they can’t take down drones?

– That is correct. Basically, taking down a drone is a police task. The armed forces may also do it, for example, in connection with an exercise or over military installations, but basically it is a task for the police in peacetime.

Martinsen believes that the conference is suitable for the oil and gas industry, the energy sector, hydropower plants, telecommunications and not least municipalities that have critical infrastructure

– And then we must also add that there are research environments in Norway that have worked on this for a long time and should consider whether the security conference is an arena in which they should participate.