A specialised AI system has been developed for drone control.
The specialists at the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) have completed the development of the Air Combat Evolution (ACE) artificial intelligence system and have commenced real-world testing. The system is designed to transform F-16 class jet fighters into drones capable of autonomous flight and participation in combat operations, reports Sarbaz.kz, citing American media.
The trials were conducted at Edwards Air Force Base in California. During these tests, the training fighter logged over 17 hours of flight, and the artificial intelligence system successfully executed all assigned tasks without any issues.
It is worth noting that the Lockheed Martin-produced VISTA X-62A aircraft was used in the trials. This aircraft is a modernized version of the F-16D Block 30 Peace Marble II, equipped with the more advanced Block 40 avionics system. This aircraft is used for pilot training and exercises, thus it is outfitted with numerous additional sensors that monitor various flight parameters and pilot behavior.
As a precautionary measure, a live pilot was present in the cockpit, ready to take control at any moment. However, as the collected data revealed, there was little need for this intervention; the ACE program adeptly managed the aircraft, avoiding any errors.
According to DARPA representatives, the existence of combat fighters operated by artificial intelligence will enable the implementation of the concept of "mosaic warfare," allowing for controlled, targeted losses. Since these aircraft won't carry human personnel, they can be assigned complex missions associated with higher risks.