Neither manned nor unmanned: the future of air warfare will be about teaming and the proper use of aircraft

June 5, 2020
Although precision munitions and drones are becoming smarter and more flexible, the military cannot simply replace them for the high-end fight.

WASHINGTON – To paraphrase Mark Twain, the reports of the demise of manned fighters are greatly exaggerated. Real Clear Defense reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

5 June 2020 -- Although there has been tremendous progress in the technologies necessary to field sophisticated unmanned aerial systems (UAS), even with advances in computing power, artificial intelligence (AI), and autonomy, we are not even close to achieving the cognitive abilities of a trained pilot and crew.

The future of air power is neither manned nor unmanned, but both; the real question involves the balance between these two. The answer will involve a deep appreciation for how best to deploy manned and unmanned aircraft, as well as missiles, in a future high-end air campaign.

This new balance could reassert the dominance of air power in high-end warfare, which has been challenged by advances in anti-access/area-denial capabilities.

Related: Manned and unmanned team training demonstrated by L-3 Link Simulation and Training at IITSEC

Related: Australian-designed artificial intelligence (AI) unmanned combat aircraft prototype unveiled by Boeing

Related: Manned and unmanned aircraft to share controlled and commercial airspace

John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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