Military Review

Agile Condor: New Analysis and Targeting System for US Air Force Drones

25

General Atomics has successfully completed flight tests of the Agile Condor, a target selection system on the MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle controlled by artificial intelligence.


The drone development company announced the passed tests on September 3, 2020, but there is no more detailed information on how they were carried out. We only know that the flights were carried out at the General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. Flight Test and Training Center. (GS-ASI) in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

The Agile Condor system is designed to automatically detect, classify and track potential targets. Its implementation will subsequently expand the capabilities of UAVs and manned aircraft to identify targets and classify them into more or less priority.

According to the president of training, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. David R. Alexander, these target calculations are of great importance for the unmanned systems of the future. The company is committed to expanding the possibilities of using artificial intelligence in unmanned systems, and the presented Agile Condor proves that it is possible to shorten the cycle of observation, analysis, decision-making and action quite effectively. At the same time, Alexander stressed that GA-ASI is ready for further cooperation with the US Air Force Research Laboratory in the direction of the development of artificial intelligence and its application in autonomous missions.

Recall that the Agile Condor system was developed by order of the US Air Force Research Laboratory. It is still unknown whether the Air Force conducted any tests of the system on other platforms before the contract with General Atomics was awarded.


In 2018, the Agile developer Condor SRC reported on improving the accuracy of sensors, which can now collect huge amounts of information. The data obtained are quickly analyzed, after which the most important information is already the basis for making a decision about any action by the UAV.

Also in the document submitted by SRC, it is emphasized that faster data transmission directly during the mission will require more power. The amount of data collected can be so large that analysts will not be able to fully analyze the received data to isolate truly meaningful information.

The above is especially true for those drones that are equipped with systems of constant monitoring of a vast territory. Among them, the American military columnist Joseph Trevithick highlights the US Air Force's Gorgon Stare system, which collects a huge number of images.

The Agile Condor system is designed to analyze the sensor data collected by the drone and send it to the operators in the control center for further analysis. Thanks to Agile Condor, the received data is filtered with rejection of “empty” images and other data of no interest. The system does not even bother sending them, so as not to clog the communication channels.

According to Joseph Trevithick, Agile Condor is just another example of the US military's broader move towards artificial intelligence and greater autonomy on missions. The use of the new system signals the arrival of an era of new capabilities for the United States Air Force. If, with the help of such systems for analyzing and processing data, it will be possible to form drone families capable of independently defining targets, then in the future, combat scenarios may undergo very serious changes.
Author:
Photos used:
Twitter / General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GS-ASI)
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  1. vvvjak
    vvvjak 7 September 2020 10: 11 New
    0
    Now it's up to the "Al-Efesbi Antiaircraft Codes" according to Pelevin.
  2. The comment was deleted.
  3. Sefevi2020
    Sefevi2020 7 September 2020 11: 17 New
    0
    The future is drones. We need to master this sector in detail.
    1. Nadrub
      Nadrub 7 September 2020 11: 36 New
      +5
      While old hryundels are sitting in the offices, eating up old Soviet developments and mastering only the budget in detail, our drones have no future, we will always catch up on a lame horse or shout that grapes are green and we don't need nafig ...
    2. VO3A
      VO3A 7 September 2020 11: 49 New
      0
      The author and the manufacturer itself advertises "Wishlist"! A research contract does not necessarily lead to a commissioning contract! In addition to other AI problems, there is a problem with the operation of the "Friend or Foe" systems, especially when conducting combat operations. If pi_ndos have a coverage area for controlling such UAVs all over the Earth, then why do they need AI, with all their problems? If electronic warfare systems disable multichannel control system signals duplicated from different control centers, then why will AI with its autonomous sensors and UAV systems resist such opposition?
      Only PR and sawing money for today, no more ...
      1. Nadrub
        Nadrub 7 September 2020 11: 59 New
        0
        Well, the AI ​​system is just being implemented for autonomy in case of impact on the drone with electronic warfare systems. So that he would at least choose something for his purpose, and not just collapse to the ground. I think he has nothing to do with friend or foe, just to limit his combat activity to a given square, that's quite enough.
      2. Grazdanin
        Grazdanin 7 September 2020 12: 16 New
        +2
        Quote: VO3A
        In addition to other AI problems, there is a problem with the operation of the "Friend" systems, especially during the conduct of hostilities.

        The operator makes the final decision.
        Agile Condor is designed to analyze sensor data that the drone first collects, identifying and classifying objects of interest, and then highlighting them for operators in the control center or personnel receiving information in other remote locations for further analysis.

        "This selective 'discovery and notification' process frees up bandwidth and increases data rates while reducing the delay between data collection and analysis," says SRC 2018 White Paper
        Quote: VO3A
        If electronic warfare systems disable multichannel control system signals duplicated from different control centers,

        As the Spartans would answer: If. There are no confirmed cases. The capabilities of REP is greatly exaggerated in the Russian-speaking segment of the Internet.
    3. SovAr238A
      SovAr238A 7 September 2020 16: 28 New
      +3
      Quote: Sefevi2020
      The future is drones. We need to master this sector in detail.

      When did the first Predators take off there?
      And how long did it take before the appearance of the Russian serial analogue?
      And, not yet passed, time is still going on before the appearance ...

      They have had almost 30 years of detailed studies, and we still do not have a single combat apparatus.
  4. Boris Chernikov
    Boris Chernikov 7 September 2020 11: 21 New
    -1
    the problem with "drone swarms" is that they cannot be both efficient and cheap
    1. Nadrub
      Nadrub 7 September 2020 11: 37 New
      0
      The human life of the more highly skilled is much more expensive.
      1. Boris Chernikov
        Boris Chernikov 7 September 2020 11: 44 New
        -4
        Yes, no one denies this .. Just another idea of ​​the US fix about "make a bunch of UAVs out of a barn and sticks and extinguish any air defense with them" ... it looks strange, so cheap UAVs are so bad that the electronic filling lends itself very well to the influence of funds Electronic warfare, but dear ones .. already expensive and you can't make swarms of them because it's expensive .. Well, really, what kind of "cheap swarm" is it if it costs under the lard of green?
    2. SovAr238A
      SovAr238A 7 September 2020 16: 32 New
      +4
      Quote: Boris Chernikov
      the problem with "drone swarms" is that they cannot be both efficient and cheap


      There is a concept: "quantity turns into quality" ...
      If the target cannot be destroyed by a swarm of a dozen mid-price UAVs, then why do you think that it cannot be destroyed by a hundred budget UAVs ???

      As in folk art: "The essence of this fable is Such that a flock of hares" beats the "lion" ...
      1. Boris Chernikov
        Boris Chernikov 7 September 2020 18: 19 New
        -2
        let them invest ... well, you think ours will additionally place a couple of air defense systems next to ...
  5. APASUS
    APASUS 7 September 2020 11: 33 New
    -2
    The use of the new system marks the beginning of an era of new capabilities for the United States Air Force. If, with the help of such systems for analyzing and processing data, it will be possible to form drone families capable of independently defining targets, then in the future, combat scenarios may undergo very serious changes.

    Each such Agile Condor will have its own "Peresvet"

    It sucks that because of the notorious secrecy of Peresvet, we will not know the performance characteristics for another 20 years
    1. Boris Chernikov
      Boris Chernikov 7 September 2020 11: 47 New
      -2
      there is already a Rat complex for various UAVs
      on the basis of Bulat ... from 2,5 km the microwave will hit the brains, and by 1,5 km it will already burn the laser. For the defense of the complexes at the current stage, there will be enough ... and there the power will be increased
      1. The eye of the crying
        The eye of the crying 7 September 2020 22: 05 New
        +1
        Quote: Boris Chernikov
        From 2,5 km the microwave will hit the brain, and at 1,5 km the laser will burn it.


        If anything, the working height of the MQ-9 is 7.5 km.
        1. Boris Chernikov
          Boris Chernikov 8 September 2020 12: 33 New
          0
          if anything, then the MQ-9 is a working target of any Russian air defense complex for 10 years already ... and yes, "cheap", to call a UAV, which costs 15 million bucks ... as it is not comme il faut
          1. The eye of the crying
            The eye of the crying 8 September 2020 12: 36 New
            0
            MQ-9 is a target for an air defense complex (although not every complex can reach it). But the Rat complex is a target for the MQ-9.
            1. Boris Chernikov
              Boris Chernikov 8 September 2020 12: 38 New
              -1
              I will reveal a terrible secret, in Russia an integrated approach to ensure air defense ... in other words, the S-400 will shoot down missiles / planes, large drones, and everything that breaks through and threatens it is already destroyed by Armor and in the future complexes a la Rat ... so you somehow pass)
              1. The eye of the crying
                The eye of the crying 8 September 2020 12: 41 New
                0
                Quote: Boris Chernikov
                I will reveal a terrible secret


                You will not open. It's not even a secret if you didn't know.

                Quote: Boris Chernikov
                you somehow pass)


                For some reason you mentioned the Rat complex, useless against the MQ-9 (the only UAV that is currently equipped with an Agile Condor). That was really past
                1. Boris Chernikov
                  Boris Chernikov 8 September 2020 12: 58 New
                  -1
                  and you were apparently taught very badly to read, I directly indicated that for various UAVs and that the Rat will be modernized)
                  1. The eye of the crying
                    The eye of the crying 8 September 2020 13: 04 New
                    0
                    Quote: Boris Chernikov
                    I directly indicated that for various UAVs


                    "Rat" is unsuitable to defeat the only UAV equipped with an Agile Condor.

                    Quote: Boris Chernikov
                    Rat will be upgraded)


                    That's when its characteristics grow 3 times, you will no longer miss.
                    1. Boris Chernikov
                      Boris Chernikov 8 September 2020 13: 13 New
                      -1
                      laughing those. at first you screwed up without reading my comment to the end, and now you are trying to dump your shoals on me? it would be better to keep silent, you would pass for a smart one
                      1. The eye of the crying
                        The eye of the crying 8 September 2020 13: 15 New
                        0
                        Quote: Boris Chernikov
                        those. you screwed up at first without reading my comment to the end


                        Those. I read your comment to the end and pointed out its absurdity.

                        Quote: Boris Chernikov
                        it would be better if they were silent, they would pass for a clever


                        It's good that you are not silent smile
                      2. Boris Chernikov
                        Boris Chernikov 8 September 2020 13: 16 New
                        -1
                        yes as you noticed) it would be better to read the comments carefully
  6. SovAr238A
    SovAr238A 7 September 2020 16: 35 New
    +2
    Quote: APASUS
    The use of the new system marks the beginning of an era of new capabilities for the United States Air Force. If, with the help of such systems for analyzing and processing data, it will be possible to form drone families capable of independently defining targets, then in the future, combat scenarios may undergo very serious changes.

    Each such Agile Condor will have its own "Peresvet"

    It sucks that because of the notorious secrecy of Peresvet, we will not know the performance characteristics for another 20 years


    Have you seen its cost and size?
    It costs more than the Tu-160 ...

    At the forefront, are you going to place such?