Thursday, November 12, 2009

Next Phase of Skynet's plan proceeds

According to Fox News; Armies of robotic drones just like Skynet's may be just around the corner. The U.S. Navy is developing unmanned fighting vehicles that network together and operate in "swarms." These drones have proven one of the most effective — and yet most controversial — weapons in the arsenal. Officials credit the use of Predator drones with guided missiles, with eliminating a senior terrorist leaders beyond the reach of ground forces in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Until now, a UAV had been controlled remotely by a human over satellite link, but they were unable to communicate with each other until in a demonstration last week, NAVAIR linked unmanned drones, including air and ground vehicles, into unmanned squadrons with a single person operating all six vehicles.

"It's an initiative to coordinate air vehicles with ground vehicles or each other," says Ward Carroll, editor of "Instead of six guys controlling six UAVs, you've got one guy controlling six. This optimizes use of available resources in any battlespace."

Patrick Esposito, president of Augusta Systems who created the intelligent network device that made this possible; said swarming algorithms "are driven by digital pheromone-based maps of the area in which the swarms are operating. This is similar to the reasoning used by insects, which was the inspiration for the swarming concept."

Carroll thinks linked groups of vehicles are the future of combat drones. "UAVs are cool but we're not utilizing them effectively," he points out. The USAF has 7,000 UAVs and they need "to start thinking about midair collisions, interaction, saving intel, and so on.

Read the full story here.

Source: Fox News / Eamo

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