A video from Boeing shows the development of a little-known frontier of the drone arms race — an unmanned F-16 fighter jet.
The development is an important step in drone warfare because it allows fighter pilots to train against actual fighter jets with live weapons.
It could also potentially pave the way for unmanned fighter jets, that are remotely piloted from the ground and completely eliminate collateral in the skies. Unmanned fighters would be an enormous asymmetrical advantage and would change the game of enforcing no-fly zones.
Without a pilot, the aircraft earns a new designator, going from an F-16 to a QF-16. It’s pretty cool to watch the pilot start the jet up and then quickly hop out, leaving a the plane to take off with a conspicuously empty cockpit.
Take a look:
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