Military

Britain successfully trials AI in battlefield scanning experiment

©iStock/dani3315

Britain has successfully trialled using AI to scan for hidden attackers in a mock urban battlefield environment in Montreal, Canada.

The AI, called SAPIENT, was developed in the UK with the aim of using sensors to detect potential unseen dangers to soldiers.

SAPIENT is more efficient than manually scanning live feeds and frees up more soldiers to be used for operational means elsewhere.

Canada and the UK maintain a close security partnership as part of the so-called ‘Five Eyes’ alliance which also includes Australia, New Zealand, and the United States.

SAPIENT was tested alongside other high-end military technologies including exoskeleton suits and new surveillance and night vision equipment.

Defence Minister Stuart Andrew said:

“This British system can act as autonomous eyes in the urban battlefield. This technology can scan streets for enemy movements so troops can be ready for combat with quicker, more reliable information on attackers hiding around the corner.

Investing millions in advanced technology like this will give us the edge in future battles.”

Trials with Five Eyes partners are due to go on for three weeks and include soldiers from each nation. A similar exercise is due to be conducted in the UK in 2020.

AI being used for military purposes is a controversial subject. Some believe it should have no role, while others feel it must be developed to keep pace with other nations such as Russia and China who are both investing heavily.

“Artificial intelligence is the future, not only for Russia, but for all humankind,” said Russian President Vladimir Putin. “It comes with colossal opportunities, but also threats that are difficult to predict. Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.”

Earlier this year, Google was forced to drop its contract with the Pentagon to develop AI technology for drones following backlash and resignations from employees. Many other Silicon Valley giants followed in committing not to undertake military work.

Other companies, however, were more than happy to pick up the lucrative contracts.

What are your thoughts on SAPIENT and military AI? Let us know in the comments.

 Interested in hearing industry leaders discuss subjects like this and sharing their use-cases? Attend the co-located AI & Big Data Expo events with upcoming shows in Silicon Valley, London and Amsterdam to learn more. Co-located with the  IoT Tech Expo, Blockchain Expo and Cyber Security & Cloud Expo so you can explore the future of enterprise technology in one place.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

To Top

We are using cookies on our website

We use cookies to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features, and to analyse our traffic. Please confirm if you accept our tracking cookies. You are free to decline the tracking so you can continue to visit our website without any data sent to third-party services. All personal data can be deleted by visiting the Contact Us > Privacy Tools area of the website.