Military Embedded Systems

DoD officials cite AI as a potential tool to bolster missile defense


August 13, 2021

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Department of Defense photo.

WASHINGTON. The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) is focusing on more efficiently utilizing the vast amounts on data generated during missile testing conducted by the United States military through the use of artificial intelligence (AI). 

"With machine learning and artificial intelligence, you can go into that whole vast amount of data and you can start to see interesting attributes rise and we're seeing that now once we start to institute artificial intelligence and machine learning," said Navy Vice Adm. Jon A. Hill said during a presentation at the Space & Missile Defense Symposium in Huntsville, Alabama.

However, officials claim that in the world of missile defense, there is often more than just the testing and assessing of systems. Actual operations must aslo be taken into consideration, like the detection of threats, command and control of systems, and engagement with a threat. The MDA asserts that those areas can also be enhanced by AI.

According to officials, these efforts have a common goal of simply easing operations and workload for operators of the complex systems used to protect the United States from missile threats. Right now, Hill said, MDA is starting to look at places where AI can be used to detect, track, and discriminate targets; conduct command and control operations; and engage targets.


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