MM Blog: Autonomous Cruise Missiles

A look at an anti-ship cruise missile guided by artificial intelligence.

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A recent Pentagon budget proposal includes a request to purchase a new weapon by Lockheed Martin called the Long Range Anti-Ship Missile, according to Bloomberg. The advanced missiles would be given the location of an enemy fleet. After launch, however, the missiles use artificial intelligence to make decisions crucial to hitting their target. Although the missiles are first guided by the launching ship and then by satellite, they can complete their missions autonomously and can operate if the signal gets disrupted.

For example, the missiles can detect and avoid threats along its path. If they encounter enemy ships on the way to their target, they’ll skirt the engagement range, skipping nearby waypoints if necessary. When it reaches its target, the missile determines the precise point of impact on the targeted ship. The range of these advanced missiles is still classified information.

The Navy hopes to deploy the weapons in Pacific waters to counter potential Russian and Chinese threats.


Should the Navy deploy these advanced weapons in the Pacific? Will more weapons be armed with AI in the near future?

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