Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $2,000,000)
The purpose of this project is to engage with local law enforcement agencies in communities across Alaska to deploy and test the ability of a passive radiofrequency spectral analysis system to assist local law enforcement personnel with identifying the number of UAS operations in an area as a function of time, determining the most likely launch and recovery sites for those UAS, predicting the local targets for those operations, and identifying the location of the pilot and UAS conducting suspicious or hazardous operations. Twelve potential communities have been proposed for inclusion in this project (Anchorage, Bethel, Fairbanks, Homer, Juneau, Kenai, Ketchikan, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, Nome, Seward, Sitka, and Valdez). Each of these communities has at least one significant asset, such as the Spring Creek Correctional Center in Seward, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline terminus and port in Valdez, or the Port of Anchorage, that could be severely adversely impacted by unauthorized UAS use. Additionally, all of these communities include an airport that could be a target of careless, clueless, and criminal UAS operations. Local law enforcement officers (LEOs) will use their knowledge of the communities to identify where in the community deploying a passive UAS detection and localization system will assist them the most in their law enforcement operations. The LEOs will also evaluate the effectiveness of the system and the policies and procedures developed to mitigate the effects of unauthorized UAS operations through direct contact with the UAS's operator instead of a technological mitigation solution. The detection and tracking features of the systems being tested in this project are commonly used as the basis for C-UAS systems and understanding how they operate in the harsh environment of Alaska will provide C-UAS systems' operators and developers with important information about how they need to modify their systems for use in that environment. The result of this project will be a data set including data from 12 communities focused on what local LEOs can do to mitigate the hazards from unauthorized UAS and support their overall operations in their communities even if they are not equipped with C-UAS systems that can directly eliminate a UAS threat in the National Airspace System. "nca/ncf"
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