Boeing and Australia’s DRDC to develop AI for unmanned systems

26 September 2019 (Last Updated September 26th, 2019 14:09)

Boeing has formed a partnership with an Australian research group to develop advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technologies for unmanned systems in support of military operations.

Boeing and Australia’s DRDC to develop AI for unmanned systems
Boeing Phantom Works International chief engineer Emily Hughes discussing the AI project with Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre professor Jason Scholz. Credit: Boeing.

Boeing has formed a partnership with an Australian research group to develop advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technologies for unmanned systems in support of military operations.

Under the partnership, the company will work with Australia’s Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre (DCRC) to incorporate machine learning techniques into unmanned systems.

The machine learning techniques will improve the understanding and response of the unmanned systems to threat environments, Boeing said.

The partnership seeks to design and test AI technologies to create ‘smarter unmanned systems for global forces’.

Boeing Phantom Works International director Dr Shane Arnott said: “Over the next 12 months, Boeing Australia will design and test cognitive AI algorithms to enable sensing under anti-access conditions and to navigate and conduct enhanced tactics in denied environments.”

The project will include studying characteristics of an unmanned system, including route planning, location, and identification of objects.

In addition, the project with DCRC will examine the subsequent behavioural response of the platform.

Trusted Autonomous Systems DCRC CEO professor Jason Scholz said: “Together with Boeing, we are investing in advanced technology that can have real game-changing product outcomes for our military to match the evolving threats and achieve a sustainable autonomous industry for Australia.”

As part of the project, Boeing will work with local company RF Designs and domestic universities to flight-test and evaluate the capability with autonomous jets.

Set up in 2017, the DCRC is an Australian Government-funded initiative.

The research centre focuses on working with the industry to equip the Australian Defence Force with smart-machine technologies.