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Unprecedented combat simulation of US fighter jet powered by artificial intelligence (Video).

Unprecedented combat simulation of US fighter jet powered by artificial intelligence (Video).

AP

Under the scorching afternoon sun, an experimental orange and white F-16 fighter jet took off with a familiar roar, a symbol of American air power. But the aerial battle that followed was unlike any other: this F-16 was controlled by artificial intelligence (AI), not a human pilot. Also in the front seat was Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall.

By: AP

AI represents one of the biggest advances in military aviation since the introduction of stealth (radar-undetectable) aircraft in the early 1990s, and the Air Force jumped firmly into that research. Although the technology is not fully developed, more than 1,000 AI-guided drones are planned to be fully operational by 2028.

For this test flight, training was fittingly held at Edwards Air Force Base, a sprawling installation in the desert where Chuck Yeager surpassed the speed of sound in 1947 and where the military developed its most secret space advances. Inside classified simulators and buildings with multiple layers of intelligence protection, a new generation of test pilots are training AI agents to fly in combat. Kendall traveled here to see AI flying in real-time and to make a public statement of confidence in its future role in aerial warfare.

“Not having it is a security risk. At this point, we have to keep it,” Kendall said in an interview with the AP after the landing, referring to the AI-piloted planes. The agency, along with NBC, was given permission to view the secret plane until it was done for operational security reasons. It will not be announced.

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A new AI-powered fighter jet takes the Air Chief on a historic journey

You can read the full note here AP