FC Barcelona has stepped up its defence against potential drone incursions at Spotify Camp Nou by teaming up with the Kuppel project, a venture operated by the Government of Catalonia through the Mossos d’Esquadra police force.
The Kuppel project was established in 2020 as a means to protect Catalonia’s airspace from drones and is currently utilised at the likes of Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat airport, as well as the Tarragona petrochemical complex.
Based on the agreement announced yesterday (Tuesday), in the coming weeks, portable antennas equipped with cameras and sensors will be installed at different points of the LaLiga football club’s stadium. This will enhance the current aerial security and protection system that is in place to combat irregular activity of drones both in the stadium and in major infrastructure and facilities in the area within a radius of more than two kilometres.
The system is made up of several subsystems that can be used to obtain information from the devices that fly over this airspace, warn them if they constitute a threat, move them away and, if necessary, immediately disable them.
The Camp Nou has had an anti-drone system in place since 2017, following the terror attacks that took place in Barcelona and Cambrils. During yesterday’s presentation, Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, stated that “the cooperation between the club and the Mossos d’Esquadra goes back a long way and is a relationship of confidence that has guaranteed that members and fans have their safety guaranteed in our facilities”.
Once the sensors are installed, Barcelona states the Camp Nou will become the first stadium in Spain to be integrated into the Kuppel system, a project approved by NATO.
In October, Mohammed Yassin Amrani was handed a three-year prison sentence for plotting a drone-based terror attack that was intended to have taken place at the Camp Nou during a Barcelona match against Real Madrid.
In a trial at the Spanish National Court, Amrani’s defence team reached an agreement with the public prosecutor finding him guilty and handing out a three-year sentence for the crimes of self-indoctrination and self-education.