USAF Predators Come of Age in Iraq and Afghanistan as Reaper Waits in the Wings

Discussion in 'Military' started by onedomino, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    This technology has fundamental long-range implications for the future of the Air Force. For example, how long before onboard USAF pilots are mostly history? 10 years? 20 years? It may be sooner than we guess:

     
  2. akiboy
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    akiboy Member

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    nothing to beat the Stealth's!!!



    Akshay
     
  3. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    The Reaper has stealth characteristics. Anyway, I am referring to the fact that in the future no onboard pilots will be necessary for attack aircraft. As these machines develop, their capabilities will soon (a few years) exceed the limits of even the most expensive manned fighters. For example, in the future such aircraft will be more maneuverable than the most expensive manned aircraft because they will no longer be limited by the physiological constraints of an onboard pilot. Further, they will be able to routinely fly into very high threat areas without the fear of losing an onboard pilot. Remote piloted aircraft will be comparatively less expensive than manned aircraft of similar capability because no subsystems will be necessary to carry and sustain the pilot. Compared to manned aircraft, remote piloted aircraft will become faster, more maneuverable, have greater range, fly higher risk missions, carry more weapons, and be less expensive. Remote piloted aircraft will fundamentally change aerial combat.

    If remote piloted aircraft are possible, why cannot battlefield tanks and some naval surface units be remotely operated?

    [​IMG]
    -
    The Reaper MQ-9 is an attack aircraft.
     
  4. CSM
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    CSM Senior Member

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    They can and are; there are a bunch of unmanned/robotic groound vehicles that carry anything ffrom remote sensors to weapons. They just dont get the glory that the UAVs get.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ground/ugv.htm
     
  5. NATO AIR
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    NATO AIR Senior Member

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    A good ? is when the Navy will have carrier-based UAVS. To be honest, I think the age of the aircraft carrier is coming to a close with perhaps 10-15 years left. After that, UAVs on small ships will be the wave of the future.
     
  6. MtnBiker
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    MtnBiker Senior Member

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    I did see a tv program on an autonamous unmanned small submarine, mostly for reconnaissance, but will certain carry weapons systems in the future.
     
  7. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    Please excuse the bad MQ-9 photo I put up previously. There is a different one in place now.
     
  8. manu1959
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    manu1959 Left Coast Isolationist

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    last night i was watching the military channel....cool program on un manned vehicles...

    they showed this new one (dominator?) that hunts in packs of 100 or more...3feet long, carries three bombs plus it is a kamikaze bomb and can stay in position for days....

    too cool
     
  9. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    Very interesting article, CSM. Thanks for the link. Below is a photo of one of the heavier vehicles discussed in the link that you supplied. You know, it is one thing to operate military combat devices remotely, but something else entirely to equip them with the artificial intelligence, pattern recognition, and other components, that might allow autonomous battlespace decisions. I imagine that research is being conducted on such A.I. devices. There may be a future where autonomous devices roam the battlespace predating on enemy units.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. onedomino
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    onedomino SCE to AUX

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    Interesting. Given the degree of difficulty communicating with submarines, unmanned subs might by nature be autonomous and possess at least some A.I. Why could not thousands of such devices be seeded and loiter in the oceans threatening multi-billion dollar ballistic missile submarines, their crews, and the nuclear deterrent they carry?
     

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