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CDAO, Air Force Test AI-Enabled ‘Smart Sensor’ Autonomous Tech on UAS; Lt. Gen. Michael Groen Quoted

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The Department of Defense’s Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office and the U.S. Air Force carried out a developmental test flight of an AI-enabled autonomous technology aboard an unmanned aerial system between April and May.

CDAO and the service tested the Smart Sensor autonomous platform, which is designed to enable UAS to perform surveillance and reconnaissance missions in contested environments, CDAO said Wednesday.

“This series of test flights saw the team successfully complete most of their technical objectives,” said Lt. Gen. Michael Groen, former director of the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center and a 2022 Wash100 Award winner.

“We’re looking forward to continued advances as this system and the broader capability it represents speeds toward program transition to the Services,” he added.

CDAO partnered with the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory to work on the software package, dubbed Smart Sensor “Brain,” and General Atomics on the platform autonomy framework using open architectures.