F-35 Can Have Some Little Buddies Fly With It

The F-35 fighter will be able to have a small swarm of drones flying along with it to assist in various mission aspects. This science fiction-sounding technology comes along with already notable cost overruns, some real-world performance questions (it can outfly 40-year-old F-16s, yay!), and some 10 millions lines of (sometimes buggy) code running the bleeding-edge weapons platform.
The early phases of this kind of technology is already operational in the F-35 cockpit through what is called “sensor-fusion.” This allows the avionics technology and aircraft computer to simultaneously organize incoming information for a variety of different sensors – and display the data on a single integrated screen for the pilot.  As a result, a pilot does not have the challenge of looking at multiple screens to view digital map displays, targeting information or sensory input, among other things. 


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