Archive for the ‘military’ category: Page 12

Feb 14, 2023

1950s Fighter Jet Air Computer Shows What Analog Could Do

Posted by in categories: computing, information science, military

Imagine you’re a young engineer whose boss drops by one morning with a sheaf of complicated fluid dynamics equations. “We need you to design a system to solve these equations for the latest fighter jet,” bossman intones, and although you groan as you recall the hell of your fluid dynamics courses, you realize that it should be easy enough to whip up a program to do the job. But then you remember that it’s like 1950, and that digital computers — at least ones that can fit in an airplane — haven’t been invented yet, and that you’re going to have to do this the hard way.

The scenario is obviously contrived, but this peek inside the Bendix MG-1 Central Air Data Computer reveals the engineer’s nightmare fuel that was needed to accomplish some pretty complex computations in a severely resource-constrained environment. As [Ken Shirriff] explains, this particular device was used aboard USAF fighter aircraft in the mid-50s, when the complexities of supersonic flight were beginning to outpace the instrumentation needed to safely fly in that regime. Thanks to the way air behaves near the speed of sound, a simple pitot tube system for measuring airspeed was no longer enough; analog computers like the MG-1 were designed to deal with these changes and integrate them into a host of other measurements critical to the pilot.

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Feb 14, 2023

The ocean science community must put science before stigma with anomalous phenomena

Posted by in categories: climatology, government, military, science, sustainability

Even more extraordinary, during a 2021 interview on CBS 60 Minutes, former Navy pilots David Fravor and Alex Dietrich provided a detailed description of their encounter with a UAP while conducting pre-deployment training with the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier strike group in 2004. While flying their F/A-18F Super Hornet aircraft, they initially observed an area of roiling whitewater on the ocean surface below them. Hovering just above that was a “white Tic Tac looking” UAP. The whitewater may have indicated the presence of a larger UAP below, or that the UAP they were observing had recently emerged from the sea below it, indicating the occurrence of unidentified undersea phenomena (UUP).

The implications of these observations are profound. Society may be on the verge of answering one of the greatest questions regarding our existence — are we alone? Yet, the vast majority of established scientists across the globe have shown little interest, and this remains the case with the ocean science community.

How is it that these anomalous observations have not risen to the level of other science priorities, such as climate change? Simply put, stigma. The attention given by many non-scientific, fringe enthusiasts to the UAP arena has tainted the topic, repulsing those who rightly seek to maintain their scientific integrity and professional reputation. Additionally, the U.S. government thwarted objective analysis of UAPs out of a concern that adversaries would use them as a psychological warfare tool to sow mass hysteria and panic.

Feb 14, 2023

AI flies modified F-16 jet for 17 hours all by itself. Is this the future of the Air Force?

Posted by in categories: drones, military, robotics/AI

The skies were clear as the VISTA X-62A — a one-of-a-kind training aircraft built by Lockheed Martin on an F-16 platform — soared over the Mojave Desert. The cockpit of the high-tech jet is littered with expensive and highly sensitive avionics that enable pilots to perform their missions. But the designers could have crammed in even more technology if it were not for the two pilot seats. Their wish might come true in the not-so-distant future. That’s because this was not your regular sortie.

The training jet was recently reported to have flown 17 hours entirely operated by an artificial intelligence (AI) system, which could open the floodgates for completely autonomous jet fighters and drones. This is the first time that an AI has flown a tactical aircraft for this long.

The VISTA X-62 is perhaps the most powerful and versatile training jet in the world. It’s essentially an upgraded F-16D with Block 40 avionics installed, but with a lot of room for installing and trying out different hardware quickly and easily, that mimics the flight controls of other aircraft, enabling the aircraft itself to act as its own ground simulator. Those who’ve flown the X-62 describe it as a Swiss army knife that they can use to attach lots of different things to the airplane.

Feb 14, 2023

A-bomb trees keep history alive

Posted by in category: military

Oddly enough nearly 50 percent of the trees near the abomb blast in japan survived 😀

In the city of Nagasaki, there are dozens of hibaku trees, or “A-bomb trees” that show scars from the heat and blast of the atomic bombing 74 years ago. People in the city see the trees as eyewitnesses of the attack and take extra care of them.

The two oak trees in Sachiko Yamashita’s garden have long gashes all the way down their trunks. These are the physical scars of the 1945 bombing.

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Feb 13, 2023

Philippine Coast Guard says Chinese ship aimed laser at one of its vessels

Posted by in category: military

The Philippine Coast Guard has accused a China Coast Guard ship of pointing a “military grade” laser at some of its crew, temporarily blinding them, aboard a vessel in contested waters of the South China last week.

The Chinese ship also “made dangerous maneuvers” in approaching within 150 yards (137 meters) of the Philippine vessel, the Philippine Coast Guard alleged in a statement posted on its official Facebook page, with photos purporting to show the laser’s green beam.

The incident allegedly occurred on February 6 near Ayungin Shoal, also known as Second Thomas Shoal, in the Spratly Islands chain, known in China as the Nansha Islands. China calls the shoal Renai Reef.

Feb 13, 2023

5 Ways ChatGPT Will Change Healthcare Forever, For Better

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health, military, mobile phones, robotics/AI

Over the past decade, I’ve kept a close eye on the emergence of artificial intelligence in healthcare. Throughout, one truth remained constant: Despite all the hype, AI-focused startups and established tech companies alike have failed to move the needle on the nation’s overall health and medical costs.

Finally, after a decade of underperformance in AI-driven medicine, success is approaching faster than physicians and patients currently recognize.

The next version, ChatGPT4, is scheduled for release later this year, as is Google’s rival AI product. And, last week, Microsoft unveiled an AI-powered search engine and web browser in partnership with OpenAI, with other tech-industry competitors slated to join the fray.

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Feb 12, 2023

Third High-Altitude Airborne Object Shot Down

Posted by in category: military

One day after the US shot down a ‘cylindrical, silverish gray’ object in the northeast arctic region of Alaska, another unidentified airborne object was shot down by the US military over northern Canada on Saturday — making it the third time in just over a week that jets were deployed to neutralize foreign craft.

Feb 11, 2023

Dimension X — With Folded Hands

Posted by in category: military

Wikipedia: “With Folded Hands…” is a 1947 science fiction novelette by American writer Jack Williamson. Willamson’s influence for this story was the aftermath of World War II and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and his concern that “some of the technological creations we had developed with the best intentions might have disastrous consequences in the long run.”

The novelette, which first appeared in the July 1947 issue of Astounding Science Fiction, was included in The Science Fiction Hall of Fame, Volume Two (1973) after being voted one of the best novellas up to 1965. It was the first of several Astounding stories adapted for NBC’s radio series Dimension X.

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Feb 11, 2023

New Exascale Supercomputer Can Do a Quintillion Calculations a Second

Posted by in categories: military, supercomputing

New “exascale” supercomputers will bring breakthroughs in science. But the technology also exists to study nuclear weapons.

Feb 9, 2023

Coming to a campus near you: Nuclear microreactors

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, military, nuclear energy

If your image of nuclear power is giant, cylindrical concrete cooling towers pouring out steam on a site that takes up hundreds of acres of land, soon there will be an alternative: tiny nuclear reactors that produce only one-hundredth the electricity and can even be delivered on a truck.

Small but meaningful amounts of electricity — nearly enough to run a small campus, a hospital or a military complex, for example — will pulse from a new generation of micronuclear reactors. Now, some universities are taking interest.

“What we see is these advanced reactor technologies having a real future in decarbonizing the energy landscape in the U.S. and around the world,” said Caleb Brooks, a nuclear engineering professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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