Ukrainians are building homemade technology to thwart Russian drones

Desperate Ukrainian inventors and scientists have increasingly turned to homemade technology, including drones and jammers, in a tentative effort to keep invading Russian forces at bay.

“We are just trying to save lives,” a Kharkiv-based engineer going by the name “Kulibin” told The Sunday Times of London. “That’s the most important thing.”

A loose network of Ukrainian DIYers are buying drone parts online and pumping out signal jammers using 3D printers.

A group of science students in Kyiv collect used e-cigarettes and turn them into drone batteries. Others create targeting software and rigged antennas.

Russian and Ukrainian forces rely on commercial drones, using them as deadly reconnaissance tools amid the relentless artillery battles raging in the east of the country. The technology has enabled precision targeting: Ukrainian fighters expect to be hit by Russian counterattacks just two minutes after firing.

Russia attacks with up to 2,500 shells and rockets per hour, ten times more than Ukraine fires, officials in Kyiv say – and kills up to 200 Ukrainian soldiers a day, aide to President Volodymyr Zelensky says .

“The only thing we can do is hide,” said Monk, a member of Ukraine’s air defense.

Kulibin’s homemade jammers are linked to an app that measures the number of satellite signals in a soldier’s immediate area. The data tells the Ukrainian operator when a Russian drone is likely to be working nearby.

The fighter then points the jammer at the drone and sends out a high frequency radio wave to disrupt its signal, causing the drone to land, change course, or crash.

“Drones are the biggest problem,” said Serhii, a young soldier fighting north of Kharkiv. “If we have a place to hide, we hide, otherwise we just send information to command and hope for the best.”

Leave a Comment