Today I am going to share a very interesting piece of information that an artificial intelligence agent recently flew USAF training aircraft for more than 17 hours. For the first time, the VISTA X-62A training aircraft was flown for so long. VISTA is actually the abbreviation for Variable In-flight Simulation Test Aircraft. It has the ability to use the software to simulate the performance characteristics of other aircraft. On this particular occasion, it actually imitated a human pilot.
It is the first time that AI has flown a USAF tactical training aircraft
According to the reports, the flight took place during a testing period in December. The point worth mentioning is that it is the first time that a tactical aircraft has been deployed in such a way. Lockheed went on to say that the goal is to use the platform to test aircraft designs that can fly autonomously.
USAF TPS research director Dr. M. Christopher Cotting stated:
“VISTA allows us to parallel the development and testing of advanced artificial intelligence techniques with new driverless vehicle designs. This approach, combined with focused testing on new vehicle systems as they are produced, will rapidly mature the autonomy of unmanned platforms and allow us to deliver tactically relevant capabilities to our warfighter.”
Let me tell you that Martin Lockheed’s skunkworks division partnered with Calspan to build VISTA for the USAF TPS at Edwards Air Force Base in California. The remarkable thing here is that the VISTA program is developing the virtual heads-up display and voice command input system for the highly anticipated F-35 Lightning II.
Reports claim that the USAF recently upgraded the VISTA X-62A with Lockheed’s Model Following Algorithm (MFA) and System for Autonomous Control of the Simulation (SACS). The good part is that these systems help VISTA perform advanced flight tests when integrated. It helps leverage autonomy and AI.
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