Are you ready to hop in a self-flying plane? Well start mentally preparing, because three different aeronautics teams have just received the green light from NASA to being formal studies related to unmanned autonomous aircraft.
These investigations fall under NASA’s Convergent Aeronautics Solutions (CAS) project that will span an expected 24 to 30 months.
“Our idea is to invest a very modest amount of time and money into new technologies that are ambitious and potentially transformative,” says Richard Barhydt, NASA’s acting director of the Transformative Aeronautics Concepts Program (TACP). “They may or may not work, but we won’t know unless we try.”
The first study aims to “Build a path toward safe inclusion and certification of autonomous systems in aviation.” In other terms, self-flying planes are in the works. The team will focus on autonomy-enabling algorithms that’ll lay down the vital foundations for machine decision-making.
Researchers will also explore two additional topics. One includes “technologies for a remotely-piloted drone to make sure it’s ‘fit to fly’ before every single flight.” The aircraft will verify all its mechanics and onboard systems are secure. If an abnormality is detected, it will ground itself.
The last study deals with quantum computing “to build a secure and jam-free network capable of accommodating hundreds of thousands of drones flying each day.” Due to way in which data is processed, quantum computing could greatly increase computational efficiency.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense