Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University


The integration of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) into the already complex global aviation system presents new and unique hazards. While many studies have addressed the potential safety concerns of UAS integration, little research has been dedicated to the potential security implications. This study sought to identify potential uses and adaptations of civil UAS systems as weapons of terrorism or crime and potential UAS defenses. Researchers examined 68 academic studies, unclassified government reports, and news articles using Conceptual Analysis to systematically capture and categorize various threats. Using the collected data, researchers developed a UAS threat model for categorically evaluating potential threats. Evaluating UAS defense methodologies, researchers developed a five-layer, defense-in-depth model for protecting assets and individuals from UAS threats.