A look over the shoulder "Drone defence"

What makes the work in the field of drone defence so special? 

On the lookout for unmanned aerial vehicles

Remote-controlled drones have been a familiar reconnaissance aid and tool in the military field for many decades. However, military drones can and may be deployed only in military airspace that is strictly shielded from civilian areas.

But drones have also found their way into the civilian world. More than 10 million unmanned aerial vehicles were sold worldwide for private use in 2016 alone. The projections up to 2021 indicate a clear trend in this market: sales are expected to increase sixfold by 2021. The high-performance cameras installed in the drones are the reason why many people buy them, as they offer the possibility to record spectacular aerial footage. While there are clearly defined statutory rules for operating drones, such as prohibition zones around sensitive areas like airports, the authorities are still searching for ways to enforce these rules. The result is an increasing number of costly and time-consuming disruptions to air traffic. Criminals and terrorists, but also unthinking hobby flyers, can cause tremendous damage with their drones.

Airspace reconnaissance is therefore absolutely vital. The technologies from Rheinmetall ensure that drones are detected, identified and classified in good time in order to assess and avert dangerous situations early on.

See how our experts work and learn more about our technologies for increasing airspace safety.

Exclusive insights - What makes the work in the field of drone defence so special?
There are numerous tasks in the field of drone defence. Two of our colleagues provide insights into their field of activity.
"Our technology company has many invaluable qualities: a culture characterised by trust, entrepreneurial energy and team spirit. I am proud of the work we do and enjoy the feeling of working on something important and meaningful every day."
Matthias Diem

Head of Strategy and Business Development, Rheinmetall Air Defence AG, Zurich

As Head of Strategy and Business Development at Rheinmetall Air Defence in Zurich, drone defence is one of the topics that Matthias Diem focuses on. In the interview below, he explains what he likes about this field of activity and why he enjoys his job at Rheinmetall.
Please introduce yourself briefly.
I have been working in the area of strategy and business development at Rheinmetall Air Defence in Zurich since 2014 and lead a small but excellent team of outstanding employees.

As a father of four, I live in Zurich and also in Austria.

After studying economics in Austria, my career first took me to China, where I worked in the cable car and air freight industry. Various work placements in and study visits to China allowed me to get an insight into this incredibly dynamic business field. After further professional stations in Eastern Europe, I switched to the Advanced Marketing and Sales management programme at Airbus in Paris. This programme was rounded off by various stations at EADS International in Paris and EADS Defence and Security in Unterschleissheim and Vienna, as well as at Eurocopter Malaysia.

A further career step introduced me to the field of safety-critical communication, and air traffic control in particular, at a renowned manufacturer in this industry. This time was characterised by major projects in the Middle East and my first contacts with Rheinmetall. I was able to obtain a lot of information on Rheinmetall in advance as part of a joint project and was absolutely certain that switching to Rheinmetall was the right step for me, and an important one, despite the fact that it involved a huge adjustment for my family.

I really enjoy spending my free time with my kids out in nature or travelling, and skiing in particular – but only as long as they still let me win.
What is the most remarkable thing you have experienced as part of your work or that you have achieved with your work?
How long have you been working at Rheinmetall Air Defence and what inspires you every day about your field of activity?
In your opinion, what distinguishes Rheinmetall’s drone defence solutions?
What was your most positive experience while working at Rheinmetall so far and where do you see the greatest challenges for your area?
Why do you personally think Rheinmetall is a good employer?
What would you recommend to applicants who are interested in a job at Rheinmetall?
"When we use the software in our electro-optical systems to help identify and defend against threats from the air, it's a job well done."
Dirk Schmedes

Software Development Engineer,  Rheinmetall Electronics GmbH, Bremen

Dirk Schmedes is a software development engineer at Rheinmetall Electronics in Bremen. He works on the technologies used in the field of drone defence.
How did you end up at Rheinmetall?
I trained as an IT systems technician before deciding to study applied computer science. Then when I was looking for a suitable work placement in 2011, I found one at Rheinmetall. I was particularly impressed by the dedication of the employees and the excellent mentoring. After I graduated, I worked for an IT service provider in IT security for a short time before my path led me back to Rheinmetall. I was offered an exciting job on the high energy laser (HEL) project. I couldn’t imagine anything better than making systems function with software.
Every day, you explore the diverse areas of application for video tracking, which is also used in drone defence. What does your job entail?
What do you enjoy most about your work?
In your opinion, what makes Rheinmetall a good employer for IT specialists / software development engineers (m/f/d)?
Our technologies for military and civilian areas of application
You can get an overview of our drone defence toolbox for various different areas of application here and in the videos below.

Rheinmetall – Systems for defence against drones

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