Human Top Gun is no match for AI fighter pilot

We can add fighter pilots to the list of professionals, artificial intelligence (AI) will put out of work.

Heron Systems’ AI top gun easily beat a human ace in five simulated dogfights. The simulations were part of DARPA’s AlphaDogFight challenge. Frighteningly, “Banger” the human pilot could not hit Heron the AI’s F-16 fighter jet.

 “Heron displayed superhuman capabilities of being able to shoot and aim accurately while performing highly dynamic maneuvers,” in an F-16, Towards Data Science claims. Moreover, Heron could outwit all of Banger’s strategies.

Importantly, the AI had complete data about the dog fight; an unrealistic scenario. However, the AI could adapt to Banger’s changing strategies. The AlphaDogFight challenge is DARPA’s effort to develop artificial intelligence capable of operating fighter planes.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is holding the challenge with the US Air Force’s Air Weapons School, a press release states. Heron bested both human pilots and AIs from seven other companies in five rounds to win the AlphaDogFight challenge.

DARPA is the US military’s research and development organization. DARPA’s principal mission is to create the weapons of the future.

AI Air Line Pilots are under Development

A company called Xwing is developing AI Airline pilots. VentureBeat reports Xwing is developing regional cargo planes that can fly themselves.

Xwing claims its system can take off, fly, and land the planes without human help. However, there will be a human pilot on board to communicate with the tower.

Xwing’s business plan is to use Cessna Grand Caravan planes to haul packages for companies such as FedEx (NYSE: FDX) and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN). VentureBeat claims. Xwing will need Federal Aviation Administration Approval (FAA) to operate in the United States.

Currently, there are no autonomous aircraft operating in America’s skies. VentureBeat claims Xwinng has attracted some impressive investors including Stripe cofounders John and Patrick Collison and GitHub CEO Nat Friedman.

Therefore, AI could threaten military and civilian pilots’ jobs.