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Raumfahrt - The Next Battlefield: Robots & AI In Cislunar Space Air Force Space Command deputy Maj. Gen. John Shaw says the US probably wont be using piloted Tie Fighters in future space wars. But...

6.09.2019

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NATIONAL HARBOR: The Intelligence Community (IC) and the Pentagon are rushing to rapidly incorporate machine learning to leverage an ever-expanding pool of space data. Current efforts range from the NRO’s initiative to map which tasks can be moved to machines to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s AI, Automation and Augmentation (AAA) initiative to DoD’s consideration of how intelligent robotics could underpin future power projection into cislunar space.

Stacey Dixon, deputy director of the NGA, said the agency’s current emphasis is on implementing “automation,” that is “how do you take people out of the loop” and transfer routine data sorting tasks to computers to speed up the analytical process. However, she told the 2019 Intelligence and National Security Summit sponsored by the Intelligence and National Security Alliance and trade group AFCEA that NGA is also keenly interested in “really getting to AI” that could be used in future for actual data analysis via “pattern recognition.”

She explained that, to get from here to there, NGA has to be able to “condition” — i.e. to correctly label imagery so that machines, like children, can differentiate between targets (such as trucks versus tanks) — the “ton of data” incoming.

“So we have a little bit of a decision to make,” Dixon said, about whether to spend staff time on “going backwards to condition the data we have to be able to go forward and predict things” versus putting the effort into classifying newly obtained data and focusing instead on the other issues such as software development that are involved in enabling more developed AI capabilities. “There are some pieces of the puzzle that are not quite ready,” she explained.

Maj. Gen. John Shaw, Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) deputy, said the military will eventually need to have autonomous robots and AI systems as it evolves its space warfighting range to the Moon and beyond.

“When the Space Force stands up, it’s going to be around a long time. And its ultimate destiny is going to be providing security and projecting power through increasingly vast distances: geosynchronous to cislunar and beyond,” he said. “We’re not going to be able to do that — all the memes aside of Tie Fighters and whatever — with humans in space any time soon.”

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