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BAE Systems harnesses artificial intelligence for air operations planning

The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) has awarded BAE Systems a $17 million contract to introduce artificial intelligence (AI) into an interactive game environment to support air operations planning in contested environments as part of the Fight Tonight programme.

Under the Technical Area 2, Plan Gaming and Outcome Analysis contract, BAE Systems’ FAST Labs R&D unit, alongside subcontractors Uncharted Software and Kestrel Institute, will develop a solution to rapidly generate and review multiple operational plans and select the most robust.

‘This technology is about using AI to provide commanders with more options faster and with more details,’ said Mike Miller, technical director for FAST Labs. ‘The drag-and-drop video game-like interactions would reduce the time it takes to make a series of incremental adjustments to a plan from hours to minutes.’

The proposed solution will provide an interactive user interface that enables planners to explore and access plausible ‘futures’ in a dynamic environment. These processes will be supplemented by tools that generate and assess the feasibility of more plans than possible without the aid of technology.

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