Defense giant Thales strengthens ties with counter-drone startup DroneShield

DroneShield counter-drone

French aerospace, defense, and security giant Thales is reinforcing its ties with Australian-based counter-drone startup DroneShield in a joint effort to keep pace with the rising threats of malicious UAV deployment around the world.

The strengthening of the two companies’ existing links will be announced March 23. A press release seen in advance says the three-year-old relationship will be deepened through Thales placing orders for additional DroneShield technology for integration into the French group’s counter-drone systems. Neither the products nor value of the transaction were stipulated, as has been the case in previous acquisition of DroneShield platforms by Thales.

DroneShield produces artificial intelligence-based counter-drone and autonomous threat defense tech to companies and governments around the world – including in the US, where it’s been on a roll for the last year. It offers clients both tailor-made counter-UAV and electronic warfare assets, as well as off-the-shelf products designed to adapt to a variety of terrestrial, maritime, or airborne platforms. 

Its initial transactions with the French company involved the integration of DroneShield’s sensors into Thales’s military and aerospace systems. More recently, DroneShield’s RfOne long-range AI-enabled drone detection sensor underwent extensive testing over a six-month period by Thales’s Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System (C-UAS) teams in Northern France. The product’s measured detection range exceeded nominal specifications by an impressive 25%.

That’s been followed up by the new order of DroneShield counter-drone platforms for inclusion in larger systems that will be marketed to Thales clients.

“As drones threats escalate, Thales has been searching for a global ‘best of breed’ combination for all counter-drone capabilities, extensively testing and assessing each candidate system,” said Younes Fada, Thales surveillance system architect manager. “We are pleased with the performance of the DroneShield solutions and look forward to deploying them with our global customer base.” 

Oleg Vornik, DroneShield CEO, similarly hailed the deepening of their partnership.

“Thales has been a great defense and technology prime partner for us, having fielded our sensors as part of their combined solutions, and taking our offering to their global customer set,” Vornik said. “In the current uncertain geopolitical environment globally, and an increasing use of drones in warfare, as well as nefarious use such as terrorism and nuisance, we have a strong pipeline of projects that we are working through.” 

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