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US Gov. Unleashes Weaponized Drone Swarm

Worker Bees.Pexels/Pixabay

The Pentagon recently collaborated with CBS in order to provide the world with its first look at the future of warfare; Perdix drone swarms. For years, TV shows, movies, and books have hinted at the possibility of dozens, if not hundreds of miniature robots being used to hunt down and destroy enemies. Thanks to a recently concluded test, the U.S. has proven that the next stage of mass extermination is here.

60 Minutes made the unveiling of the drone swarm on Sunday, but successful tests were conducted back in October 2016 according to the statement provided by The Pentagon. The tests were done in China Lake, Calif. and involved 103 of the drones flying in synchronous order as dictated by their controller. The agencies behind the test are Naval Air Systems Command and the Strategic Capabilities Office.

The name Perdix comes from Greek mythology and the drones themselves are 3D-printed, made of a lightweight but durable material, and fly in groups. As for what they are used for, the statement seems to indicate that they will be used for no more than intelligence gathering.

“The micro-drones demonstrated advanced swarm behaviors such as collective decision-making, adaptive formation flying, and self-healing,” the statement reads.

Originally designed by MIT students, the drones have been adopted for a wide range of tasks that come with instructions that are just as broad, the Washington Post reports. For example, instead of providing the drones with specific data on specific targets, they can be told to simply maintain reconnaissance flights.

The swarm neural network is also a means of sharing data amongst the drones instead of giving each machine individual programming. It’s best to think of them as worker bees, with the command center acting as the Queen. In the case of modern warfare, however, it’s easy to see these worker bees becoming warrior bees at a flick of a switch.

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