Home / Technology / AI & IT / Global AI Race led by US, China and Russia to dominate the future Intelligentized Warfare , through intelligent operations and Artificial Intelligence (AI) based weapons

Global AI Race led by US, China and Russia to dominate the future Intelligentized Warfare , through intelligent operations and Artificial Intelligence (AI) based weapons

Artificial intelligence is a branch of computer science dealing with the simulation of intelligent behavior in computers. A computer system able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.


AI is further divided into two categories: narrow AI and general AI. Narrow AI systems can perform only the specific task that they were trained to perform, while general AI systems would be capable of performing a broad range of tasks, including those for which they were not specifically trained. General AI systems do not yet exist.


Military AI Applications

A new Harvard Kennedy School study concludes AI could revolutionize war as much as nuclear weapons have done.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming a critical part of modern warfare. Compared with conventional systems, military systems equipped with AI are capable of handling larger volumes of data more efficiently. Additionally, AI improves self-control, self-regulation, and self-actuation of combat systems due to its inherent computing and decision-making capabilities.


RAND report has also suggested several possible AI applications for the military. Replacing frozen software with systems that do not need to be refreshed periodically creates a broad potential for creating more nimble systems, possibly at lower cost. Again, AI could be used in training systems. For example, it could provide unpredictable and adaptive adversaries for training fighter pilots. Computer vision, the ability of software to understand photos and videos, could greatly help in processing the mountains of data from surveillance systems or for “pattern-of-life” surveillance.


Other suggested applications might include: using AIs to solve logistics challenges; to support war games; to automate combat in so-called manned-unmanned operations; to speed weapon development and optimization, and for identifying targets (as well as non-combatants).


Narrow AI is currently being incorporated into a number of military applications by both the United States and its competitors. Such applications include but are not limited to intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; logistics; cyber operations; command and control; and semiautonomous and autonomous vehicles.


These technologies are intended in part to augment or replace human operators, freeing them to perform more complex and cognitively demanding work. In addition, AI-enabled systems could (1) react significantly faster than systems that rely on operator input; (2) cope with an exponential increase in the amount of data available for analysis; and (3) enable new concepts of operations, such as swarming (i.e., cooperative behavior in which unmanned vehicles autonomously coordinate to achieve a task) that could confer a warfighting advantage by overwhelming adversary defensive systems, according to US Congress report.


AI  enabling autonomous Military operations and Systems

It seems inevitable that AI will be used for everything from data gathering and analysis to developing more sophisticated autonomous systems. Narrow AI applications to process information offer the potential to speed up the data interpretation process, freeing human labor for higher level tasks. It is predicted that future intelligent warfare will rely heavily on unmanned systems, which will “greatly reduce the ‘observation-judgment-decision-action-cycle’” faced by units in combat.


For example, Project Maven in the United States military seeks to use algorithms to more rapidly interpret imagery from drone surveillance feeds. This type of narrow AI application for militaries has clear commercial analogues and could go well beyond image recognition. From image recognition to processing of publicly available or classified information databases, processing applications of AI could help militaries more accurately and quickly interpret information, which could lead to better decision making.


Second, from hypersonics to cyber-attacks, senior military and civilian leaders believe the speed of warfare is increasing. AI could enhance the speed of decision making or OODA loop. In the case of air defense, for example, operating at machine speed could enable a system to protect a military base or city more effectively when facing saturation attacks of missiles than a person, whose reflexes could be overwhelmed, no matter how competent he or she is. This is already the principle under which Israel’s Iron Dome system operates. AI also results in enhancement of autonomy of Air, Ground and Underwater autonomous systems. Swarms, similarly, will likely require AI for coordination.


The US Army is moving out with plans to develop and evaluate robotic and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies that will help soldiers make decisions 10 times faster than they can today. In a March 2019 solicitation posted on the Federal Business Opportunities website, the service is seeking “mature and prototype” technologies that will enable the army to “provide a robotically equipped dismounted infantry platoon that is 10 times more effective” than it is today. “Infantry platoons will integrate—through manned-unmanned teaming—robotic ground, air, water, and virtual systems that increase the infantry platoon’s lethality, mobility, protection, situational awareness, endurance, persistence, and depth,” the army said.


The service is also looking for “mature and prototype” tools that will help platoon leaders and soldiers to “observe, orient, decide, and act 10 times faster than their current capability”. “Artificial Intelligence tools will take disparate streams of information from organic robotic and soldier worn sensors with higher echelon mission command, intelligence, and sensors; weave them into a coherent picture using Artificial Intelligence; and then provide that picture in an intuitive way,” the service wrote.


The Reuters news agency says military officials are exploring whether they can use AI to help predict the launch of a nuclear missile. Officials hope that, with the help of computer programs, they will be able to follow and target mobile launchers in North Korea and other places. If the research is successful, such computer systems would be able to ‘think’ for themselves, reproducing intelligent human behavior. AI programs could study huge amounts of information, including satellite imagery, faster than human beings and find signs of preparations for a missile launch.


In recent field tests, an experimental Army AI was able to find targets in satellite imagery and relay target coordinates to artillery in under 20 seconds. Accelerating the “kill chain” from detection to destruction this way is a powerful but narrow application of artificial intelligence, said Lt. Gen. Michael Groen, a Marine Corps intelligence officer who took over JAIC in Oct. 2020. “Being able to take out 10 targets in rapid succession … that’s very exciting. It’s awesome. But it’s not enough,” Groen said. “We need to think through the human-machine team and how the machine is queuing up decisions for humans to make.”


“When I think about the artificial intelligence applications, I’m thinking beyond just the use case of near-instantaneous fires upon the detection of a target,” he said. “There’s a broad range of decision-making that has to occur across the joint force that can be enabled by AI…even your decisions about how you surge forces into theater and the sequencing of your maneuver on the ground.” For example consider Joint All-Domain Command & Control (JADC2) a future meta-network linking US and allied forces across the five “domains” of land, sea, air, space, and cyberspace. In such a system, the exponentially increasing complexity of interconnections, the daunting floods of data and the millisecond speed of the machines could easily overwhelm human decision-makers – unless some form of artificial intelligence can help manage the details and perhaps suggest courses of action.


“It is not just, ‘do we have a missile ready on the launcher?’” Groen said. “AI-readiness means ensuring the data flow from thousands of sensors is going to be available….It means compute resources are available for algorithm development…It means an app-friendly environment that allows edge users to customize the data flows and their supporting tools.” As with physical raw materials, data comes in lots of different kinds, and you need to cross-reference carefully before you can (for example) fire at a suspected enemy unit in full confidence that they really are hostiles – not civilians or friendlies – and that you are really going to hit what you’re aiming at.


“Think about the things that feed solutions across the Joint Force,” Groen said. “Position data, timing data, threat location data, blue [i.e. friendly] location data, blue force status data, weather data, logistics data.” We need commanders to think thoroughly about their decision-making. What kind of decisions do they need to make? What data sources are they going to need?” Helping AI laymen think through these complex questions has become a major mission for the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center


As with physical raw materials, data comes in lots of different kinds, and you need to cross-reference carefully before you can (for example) fire at a suspected enemy unit in full confidence that they really are hostiles – not civilians or friendlies – and that you are really going to hit what you’re aiming at. “Think about the things that feed solutions across the Joint Force,” Groen said. “Position data, timing data, threat location data, blue [i.e. friendly] location data, blue force status data, weather data, logistics data.”


Race for Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS)

LAWS as a class of weapon systems capable of both independently identifying a target and employing an onboard weapon to engage and destroy the target without manual human control. This concept of autonomy is also known as “human out of the loop” or “full autonomy.” The directive contrasts LAWS with human supervised, or “human on the loop,” autonomous weapon systems, in which operators have the ability to monitor and halt a weapon’s target engagement. Another category is semi-autonomous, or “human in the loop,” weapon systems that “only engage individual targets or specific target groups that have been selected by a human operator.


LAWS would require computer algorithms and sensor suites to classify an object as hostile, make an engagement decision, and guide a weapon to the target. Although these systems are not yet in widespread development, it is believed they would enable military operations in communications-degraded or -denied environments where traditional systems may not be able to operate. Some analysts have noted that LAWS could additionally “allow weapons to strike military objectives more accurately and with less risk of collateral damage” or civilian casualties


 US Navy is developing a new weapon, called the Long Range Anti- Ship Missile, or L.R.A.S.M, a collaborative effort between Lockheed, the Office of Naval Research and the Defense Advanced Project Research Agency, or DARPA. With a range of at least 200 nautical miles, LRASM is designed to use next-generation guidance technology to help track and eliminate targets such as enemy ships, shallow submarines, drones, aircraft and land-based targets. According to the Pentagon, this means that though targets are chosen by human soldiers, the missile uses artificial intelligence technology to avoid defenses and make final targeting decisions.


US Department of Defense’s (DoD) Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is financing the development of a robotic submarine system, which is expected to be employed in applications ranging from detection of underwater mines to engagement in anti-submarine operations. Additionally, the US DoD overall spent USD 7.4 billion on artificial intelligence, Big Data, and cloud in the fiscal year 2017, while China is betting on AI to enhance its defense capabilities and is expected to become the world leader in this field by 2030.


China is looking to create a new generation of cruise missiles, which will have a high level of artificial intelligence, will be multifunctional and reconfigurable based on modular design according to a senior designer from China’s Aerospace and Industry Corp. “They will allow commanders to control them in a real-time manner, or to use a fire-and-forget mode, or even to add more tasks to in-flight missiles.”


The new Chinese weapon typifies a strategy known as “remote warfare,” said John Arquilla, a military strategist at the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey, Calif. The idea is to build large fleets of small ships that deploy missiles, to attack an enemy with larger ships, like aircraft carriers. “They are making their machines more creative,” he said. “A little bit of automation gives the machines a tremendous boost.”


The Russian military has been researching a number of AI applications, with a heavy emphasis on semiautonomous and autonomous military vehicles. Russia has also reportedly built a combat module for unmanned ground vehicles that may be capable of autonomous target identification—and, potentially, target engagement—and it plans to develop a suite of AI-enabled systems. In addition, the Russian military plans to incorporate AI into unmanned aerial, naval, and undersea vehicles and is reportedly developing swarming capabilities. These technologies could reduce both cost and manpower requirements, potentially enabling Russia to field more systems with less personnel.


Cognitive psychological  Warfare

Recent news reports and analyses have highlighted the role of AI in enabling increasingly realistic photo, audio, and video digital forgeries, popularly known as “deep fakes.” Adversaries could deploy this AI capability as part of their information operations in a “gray zone” conflict. Deep fake technology could be used against the United States and its allies to generate false news reports, influence public discourse, erode public trust, and attempt blackmail of government officials. For this reason, some analysts argue that social media platforms—in addition to deploying deep fake detection tools—may need to expand the means of labeling and authenticating content.


Articles like “Cognitive Warfare: Dominating the Intelligence Age” (认知战: 主导智能时代的较量) (March 2020) describe a shift in opposing military centers of gravity toward the cognitive domain. Chinese military authors are fond of invoking the U.S.-originated OODA loop . These Chinese authors observe that decision-making is the bottleneck in the (observe, orient, decide, act) OODA loop. Future autonomous systems, they say, will compete for cognitive advantage and thus decision advantage enabling faster cycling of military action to dominate an adversary in “parallel operations” drawing from the U.S.-originated parallel warfare concept.


China is also  aim to dominate cognitive warfare. Two Chinese researchers, Shen Shoulin and Zhang Guoning, have identified another aspect of intelligent operations in the form of “cognitive confrontation” (renzhi duikang,), in which the key objective will be to achieve decisive supremacy over enemies in terms of information and awareness. As a result, future operations will attack enemy perceptions and understanding of the battle space by “taking the cognitive initiative and damaging or interfering with the cognition of the enemy based on the speed and quality of the cognitive confrontation”.


AI offers the PLA the ability to precisely release kinetic energy and paralyze an opponent’s system-of-systems. A Chinese state-media (Xinhua) article, “Military Intelligentization is Profoundly Affecting Future Operations” (军事智能化正深刻影响未来作战) was posted to the Chinese Ministry of National Defense website in September 2019. The article observes that in intelligentized warfare — cognitive-centric warfare — AI and autonomous systems will allow for precise energy release, either dispersed across a system-of-systems or concentrated on a critical node to impose “highly persistent paralysis” on an adversary. Battlefield advantage will go to the force that can dominate the cognitive domain — perceiving, adapting and acting faster than an opponent to impose or reverse system-of-systems paralysis.


The PLA should be given credit for thinking big to solve problems that participants in warfare have grappled with for generations: cognitive advantage, speed, early warning, and first-mover advantage. They are creating an underlying strategic doctrine for AI and other cutting-edge technologies in future warfare; if they can implement this successfully, the PLA will possess an obvious advantage in future conflicts, writes Brent M. Eastwood, Ph.D., is a Professorial Lecturer at The George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs in the Security Policy Studies MA Program.


Russia is also exploring innovative uses of AI for remote sensing and electronic warfare, which could in turn reduce an adversary’s ability to effectively communicate and navigate on the battlefield. Finally, Russia has made extensive use of AI technologies for domestic propaganda and surveillance, as well as for information operations directed against the United States and U.S. allies.



China’s Intelligentized Warfare

Chinese strategists also contend that AI enables command and operational design. PLA believes that command and control can be “built-in” to system design and operational plans to mitigate threats of either human or machine errors in combat. Consistent with its Marxist-Leninist intellectual heritage, the PLA conceptualizes war as a scientific process that can be deconstructed, allowing for calculated outcomes. AI and machine-learning may provide the Chinese military with the algorithms and tools it believes it needs to determine end results and develop invulnerable systems-of-systems, operational capabilities and military plans.


Chinese operational concepts — including autonomous swarm attrition warfare (自主集群消耗战), autonomous dormant assault warfare (自主潜伏突袭战) autonomous cross-domain mobile warfare (自主跨域机动战) and autonomous cognitive control warfare (自主认知控制战). Swarm attrition warfare capitalizes on decentralized operations and coordinated saturation attacks by large numbers of autonomous, unmanned systems. Dormant assault warfare portends surprise attacks at key points or against critical adversary capabilities by autonomous platforms programmed to lie in wait until activated. Autonomous cross-domain mobile warfare envisions an autonomous force that is highly mobile and can strike on a large-scale and at long-ranges. This last concept presumably borrows from the U.S. Army’s Multi-Domain Operations concept.


However, PLA has gone ahead than by just not developing AI enabled weapons but also tactics and doctrine  of employing them.  PLA’ s efforts are to integrate new technologies is the emerging concept of “intelligent operations” (zhinenghua zuozhan). Although the concept appears to still be evolving, an article from the official Xinhua state news service has defined intelligent operations: “Intelligent operations have AI at their core, and use cutting-edge technologies throughout operational command, equipment, tactics, and other areas… they must be understood by the core concepts of ‘system intelligence is central,’ ‘full use of App Cloud,’ ‘multi-domain integration,’ ‘brain-machine fusion,’ ‘intelligent autonomy,’ and ‘unmanned struggle for mastery’” in the battlefield environment.


This new form of warfare will “break through traditional time and space limits of cognition,” “reconstruct the relationships between humans and weaponry,” and “bring about entirely new models of command and control”.  Analyst Li Minghai from the PLA Daily went into further detail on intelligent operations, and the related concept of “intelligent warfare” (zhinenghua zhanzheng, 智能化战争). Li asserts that “future intelligent warfare is a three-dimensional, all-field warfare.” He further predicts that it will rely heavily on unmanned systems, which will “greatly reduce the ‘observation-judgment-decision-action-cycle’” faced by units in combat (Xinhua, January 15.)


PLA strategists believe that intelligentized warfare is an evolution of informationized warfare. Several authors point out that intelligentized warfare is essentially highly evolved informationized warfare — system-of-systems confrontation reliant on information moving through digital systems and networks. “How to Integrate the Mechanization, Informationization and Intelligentization of Weapons and Equipment” (武器装备机械化, 信息化, 智能化怎么融) (October 2019) acknowledges that informationization and intelligentization are inextricably linked.


China aims to dominate the next generation of “intelligentized” warfare, relying on “long-range, precise, smart, stealthy and unmanned weapons platforms.” China and Russia have also reached effective technological-military parity with the U.S.  “The PLA (People’s Liberation Army) actively promotes international security and military cooperation and refines relevant mechanisms for protecting China’s overseas interests,” the white paper titled ‘China’s National Defence in the New Era’ stated. “Driven by the new round of technological and industrial revolution, the application of cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), quantum information, big data, cloud computing and the Internet of Things are gathering pace in the military field,” it said. Talking about PLA, the document said the Chinese Army lags behind its counterparts and needs more cutting-edge technology. ‘Intelligent warfare’ would define future wars and would involve Artificial Intelligence, big data, cloud computing and “new and high-tech military technologies based on IT”, the defence plan stated.


According to Li Minghai, analyst from PLA daily, various algorithms can predict what happens on the battlefield, and may therefore offer a cognitive advantage to PLA soldiers. Li’s supreme “algorithm” reduces the fog of war and helps fighters achieve better situational awareness: “The party that grasps the advantages of the algorithm in future war can quickly and accurately predict the situation on the battlefield, innovate the optimal method of warfare, and achieve the war purpose of ‘winning before the war’”.  Li’s algorithm concept is based on big data and speed of computational power, especially with the use of quantum computing: he believes that quantum computing can “quickly propose flexible and diverse operational plans and countermeasures against the changes in the enemy’s situation, constantly disrupting the enemy’s attempts and deployments”.


Li also proposes other aspirational ideas that could become a part of intelligent operations in the future.  For example, he describes a “cloud brain” that would link combat units to an intelligent network, while battlefield decision-making and weapons control systems would be integrated on an undefined “net.”  Meanwhile, intelligent warfare would combine this “net” with a “smart cloud” that would provide situational awareness (or what Western militaries might call intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance). Somehow this system would be available to the common soldier, but how this would happen is not clear. Li mentions the use of a neural network to enhance the cloud-brain’s information and decision making, but he offers no concrete steps to make it a reality (Xinhua, January 15).


Academy of Military Science (Zhongguo Junshi Kexue Yuan, 中国军事科学院), or AMS, arguably the PLA’s premier institution for doctrinal development, is now focused on a significant program of reform and academic outreach intended to allow the PLA to better integrate and employ AI, robotics, and intelligent manufacturing (China Brief, January 18).


AI Race

The promise of AI—including its ability to improve the speed and accuracy of everything from logistics and battlefield planning to human decision-making—is driving militaries around the world to accelerate research and development.  In fact, according to a recent report from analyst firm Cognilytica, France, Israel, the United Kingdom, and the United States all are equally strong when it comes to AI, with China, Canada, Germany, Japan, and South Korea equally close in their AI strategic strength.


In 2018 the United States issued an Executive Order from the President naming AI the second-highest R&D priority after the security of the American people for the fiscal year 2020. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Defense announced it will invest up to $2 billion over the next five years towards the advancement of AI. US has launched third Offset strategy to leverage technologies such as artificial intelligence, autonomous systems and human-machine networks to equalise advances made by the nation’s opponents in recent years.


The order, titled Accelerating America’s Leadership in Artificial Intelligence, “will direct agencies to prioritize AI investments in research and development, increase access to federal data and models for that research and prepare workers to adapt to the era of AI.” The National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan lays out the strategy for AI funding and development in the US. As recently as 2020 the United States launched the American AI Initiative with a strategy aimed at focusing the federal government resources. The US federal government also launched AI.gov to make it easier to access all of the governmental AI initiatives currently underway. Once potentially seen lackluster in comparison to that of China and other countries the US government has really started making AI a priority to keep up in recent years.


IN JULY 2017, CHINA’S government issued a sweeping new strategy with a striking aim: draw level with the US in artificial intelligence technology within three years, and become the world leader by 2030.  China released a national AI development plan, aiming to grow the country’s core AI industries to over 150 billion yuan ($22.15 billion) by 2020 and 400 billion yuan ($59.07 billion) by 2025, the State Council said. With this major push into AI, China is looking to rival U.S. market leaders such as Alphabet Inc’s Google and Microsoft Corp, as it is keen not to be left behind in a technology that is increasingly key from smart cars to energy.


China has pursued language and facial recognition technologies, many of which it plans to integrate into the country’s domestic surveillance network. Such technologies could be used to counter espionage and aid military targeting. In addition to developing various  types of air, land, sea, and undersea autonomous military vehicles, China is actively pursuing swarm technologies, which could be used to overwhelm adversary missile defense interceptors. Moreover, open-source publications indicate that China is developing a suite of AI tools for cyber operations.


The government aims to make the AI industry worth about $150 billion and is pushing for greater use of AI in a number of areas such as the military and smart cities. Furthermore, the Chinese government has made big bets including a planned $2.1 Billion AI-focused technology research park. And in 2019 The Beijing AI Principles were released by a multi-stakeholder coalition including the Beijing Academy of Artificial Intelligence (BAAI), Peking University, Tsinghua University, Institute of Automation and Institute of Computing Technology in Chinese Academy of Sciences, and an AI industrial league involving firms like Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent. China has overtaken the United States to become the world leader in deep learning research, a branch of artificial intelligence (AI) inspired by the human brain, according to White House reports that aim to help prepare the US for the growing role of artificial intelligence in society.


China’s National Intelligence Law, for example, requires companies and individuals to “support, assist, and cooperate with national intelligence work.”  As a result, the Chinese government has a direct means of guiding military AI development priorities and accessing technology developed for civilian purposes.


For the US military, AI offers a new avenue to sustain its military superiority while potentially reducing costs and risk to US soldiers. For others, especially Russia and China, AI offers something potentially even more valuable—the ability to disrupt US military superiority. President Donald Trump and his administration support the research effort. The administration plans to increase spending to $83-million in next year’s budget for just one of the AI-powered missile programs, according to U.S. officials and budget documents. The budget increase shows the growing importance of research on AI-powered anti-missile systems. It comes at a time when the United States faces a more militarily aggressive Russia and a serious nuclear threat from North Korea.


Putin warns: “Artificial intelligence is the future, not only for Russia but for all of humankind. Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.” President Vladmir Putin suggested that AI may be the way Russia can rebalance the power shift created by the U.S. outspending Russia nearly 10-to-1 on defense each year. The draft AI roadmap was developed during a conference held by Russia’s Ministry of Defence, Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Education and Science in March 2018. Additionally, Russian President Vladimir Putin approved the National Strategy for the Development of Artificial Intelligence (NSDAI) for the period until 2030 on October 2019.


Russia has said that intelligent machines are vital to the future of their national security plans and, by 2025, it plans to make 30% of its country’s military equipment robotic. The government also wants to standardize development of artificial intelligence focusing on image recognition, speech recognition, autonomous military systems, and information support for weapons’ life-cycle. There is also a new Russian AI Association bringing the academic and private-sector together. Russia’s state-sponsored RT media reported AI was “key to Russia beating [the] U.S. in defense.”  The Russian military is also developing robots, anti-drone systems, and cruise missiles that would be able to analyze radars and make decisions on the altitude, speed and direction of their flight, according to state media.


Despite Russia’s aspirations, analysts argue that it may be difficult for Russia to make significant progress in AI development. In 2017, Russian military spending dropped by 20% in constant dollars, with subsequent cuts in 2018. In addition, many analysts note that Russian academics have produced few research papers on AI and that the Russian technology industry has yet to produce AI applications on par with those produced by the United States and China. Other analysts counter that such factors may be irrelevant, arguing that while Russia has never been a leader in internet technology, it has managed to become a notably disruptive force in cyberspace. Russia may also be able to draw upon its growing technological cooperation with China.




Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced that the country had begun manufacturing robots with autonomous militarized capabilities. “The serial production of combat robots has begun,” Shoigu said during Friday’s Knew Knowledge online marathon, according to the state-run Tass Russian News Agency. “What has emerged are not simply experimental, but robots that can be really shown in science-fiction films as they are capable of fighting on their own.”


As Russian leadership attempts to come to terms with technology’s impact on its military power and role in the world, artificial intelligence and autonomy stand out as an area of particular growth and potential for influence. In ” Artificial Intelligence and Autonomy in Russia,” CNA provides the first major piece of US research that articulates contemporary Russia’s main initiatives, achievements, and accomplishments in AI and autonomy efforts and places those initiatives within the broader technological landscape in Russia.


“Russian military strategists have placed a premium on establishing what they refer to as ‘information dominance on the battlefield,'” the report stated, “and AI-enhanced technologies promise to take advantage of the data available on the modern battlefield to protect Russia’s own forces and deny that advantage to the adversary.”


While there are significant challenges and some reservations toward ceding critical decision-making capabilities to artificial intelligence and away from human minds, trends clearly signal that Russian efforts to introduce these advanced capabilities are well underway. And critical input is coming from China, which the report identified as “the key partner for Russia in the sphere of high technology in general and artificial intelligence in particular.” This cooperation, part of a broader strategic partnership fostered by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping, has only strengthened despite efforts by the United States to target its top near-peer competitors with various sanctions.


Bendett and Edmonds’ report includes a list of some two dozen platforms being developed by the Russian military incorporating some degree of AI or autonomy. These include vehicles based on land, air and sea as well as specialized mines, and even an anthropomorphic robot said capable of dual-wielding firearms, driving cars and traveling to space.


And while CNA cites a recent Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology report saying that revenue generated by AI-related activity in Russia was growing at a rate 10 times faster than the country’s GDP, this number paled in comparison to that of China, which was funding AI research at a level 350 times higher than that of Russia, and was second only to the U.S. in employment in the AI sector.


Artificial Intelligence in Military Market

Artificial Intelligence in Military Market is estimated at USD 6.3 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 11.6 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 13.1% during the forecast period. An increase in funding from military research agencies and a rise in R&D activities to develop advanced AI systems are projected to drive the increased adoption of AI systems in the military sector.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming a critical part of modern warfare as it can handle massive amounts of military data in a more efficient manner as compared to conventional systems. It improves the self-control, self-regulation, and self-actuation abilities of combat systems using inherent computing and decision-making capabilities. In military sector, AI is used for autonomous targeting, survillence and monitoring, security, cyber defense, cyber warfare and to carry out other important military functions. Due to its high efficiency, it is widely adopted in fighter aircrafts, helicopters and Military Fighting Vehicles (MFVs). Several defense forces are implementing AI in several application including unmanned systems, guided munitions and battlefield operations.


Market Drivers:

Rising Demand for Big Data Analytics

The stalling demand for information processing is leading the growth of big data analytics and artificial intelligence in the defense market in the current scenario. With the help of AI, the defense sector deals with several options, which include operational, strategic and tactical level planning in many of its functions.


The demand for Artificial Intelligence is growing, owing to the adoption of big data analytics. Big data in military is used for analysing and systematically extract information from the data sets and helps defense leaders to make better decisions. It can process the information about its equipment, training, and installations which can improve the overall efficiency of AI in military. This has attributed to use big data for managing the larger amount of data which is generated by military officials daily. It reduce the chances of cyber attack from other countries maintaining the data security of military. Hence, rising demand for big data analytics is expected to drive the AI in military market during the forecast period.


Increasing Demand for Cloud Services

Increasing demand for cloud services accesses Al-based war planning by storing the private military data and also by providing the computing power. It also enables the warfighter with data and mAIntAIning the robust technological advantage. According to the US military, cloud service advance the ground operations by direct access to artificial intelligence. Therefore, the increasing demand for cloud services is expected to drive the AI in military market during the forecast period.


Impact of Covid

In the view of the global economic slowdown, China, India, Japan and South Korea are predicted to recover fastest amongst all the countries in the Asian market. Germany, France, Italy, Spain to take the worst hit and this hit is expected to be regain 25% by the end of 2021- Positive Growth in the economic demand and supply.


U.S. Market recovers fast; In a release on May 4th 2021, the U.S. Bureau and Economic Analsysis and U.S. Census Bureau mentions the recovery in the U.S. International trade in March 2021. Exports in the country reached $200 billion, up by $12.4 billion in Feb 2021. Following the continuous incremental trend, imports tallied at $274.5 billion, picked up by $16.4 billion in Feb 2021.


Some industry experts have noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has not affected the demand for Ai in Military, especially for military end use. Companies such as Lockheed Martin Corporation (US), Northrop Grumman Corporation (US), BAE Systems (UK), Rafael Advanced Defense Systems (Israel) and Thales Group (France) received contracts for the supply of AI systems to the armed forces of various nations in the first half of 2020, showcasing continuous demand during the COVID-19 crisis.


Market Segmentation

The global artificial intelligence in defense market is segmented on the platform, components, technology and application.

  • Based on Application: Logistics, Cyberspace Operation, Information Operation, Semiautonomous and Autonomous Vehicles, battlefield healthcare, logistics and transportation, warfare platform, and Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS)
  • Based on Platform: Airborne, Land, Sea, and Naval
  • Based on Technology: Deep Learning, Machine Learning, Virtual Reality, Natural Language Processing, Data Mining, and Others
  • On the basis of component the market is sub-segmented into hardware, software and service.


Based on platform, the space segment of the Artificial Intelligence in military market is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The space AI segment comprises CubeSat and satellites. Artificial intelligence systems for space platforms include various satellite subsystems that form the backbone of different communication systems. The integration of AI with space platforms facilitates effective communication between spacecraft and ground stations.


Based on offering, the Software segment is projected to witness the highest CAGR during the forecast period. Technological advances in the field of AI have resulted in the development of advanced AI software and related software development kits. AI software incorporated in computer systems is responsible for carrying out complex operations. It synthesizes the data received from hardware systems and processes it in an AI system to generate an intelligent response. Software segment is projected to witness the highest CAGR owing to the significance of AI software in strengthening the IT framework to prevent incidents of a security breach.



Key Regions are North America, South America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa and South America.

The US and Canada are key countries considered for market analysis in the North American region. This region is expected to lead the market from 2020 to 2025, owing to increased investments in AI technologies by countries in this region. This market is led by the US, which is increasingly investing in AI systems to maintain its combat superiority and overcome the risk of potential threats on computer networks. The US plans to increase its spending on AI in military to gain a competitive edge over other countries. The North America US is recognized as one of the key manufacturers, exporters, and users of AI systems worldwide and is known to have the strongest AI capabilities.


Market Dynamics

The significant drivers of the artificial intelligence in defense market are the growing adoption of cloud services and up gradation of computing power and rising development of chipsets that supports artificial intelligence. The increasing adoption of AI to improve planning, logistics and transportation globally is creating an opportunity for artificial intelligence in the defense market in the forecast period.


The defense industry across countries is constantly under threat of cyberattacks. For instance, in September 2019, SolarWinds, a US technology company, was hacked, revealing sensitive data of many hospitals, universities, and US government agencies. Another notable incident was in October 2020, when the FBI and the US Cyber Command announced that a North Korean group had hacked think tanks, individual experts, and government entities of the US, Japan, and South Korea to illegally obtain intelligence, including that on nuclear policies.


Current cybersecurity technology falls short in terms of tackling advanced ransomware and spyware threats. The above mentioned SolarWinds hack was revealed when FireEye, a cybersecurity provider, was probing one of its own hacks. Such incidents indicate the increasing importance of having advanced cybersecurity capabilities. Artificial intelligence-based cybersecurity solutions that can be trained to independently gather data from various sources, analyze the data, correlate it to the signals indicating cyberattacks, and take relevant actions, can be deployed.


Market players

Various companies are focusing on organic growth strategies such as product launches, product approvals and others such as patents and events. Inorganic growth strategies activities witnessed in the market were acquisitions and partnership & collaborations. These activities have paved way for expansion of business and customer base of market players. The market players from artificial intelligence in defense market are anticipated to lucrative growth opportunities in the future with the rising demand for artificial intelligence in defense in the global market. Below mentioned is the list of few companies engaged in the artificial intelligence in defense market.


The  key artificial intelligence in defense companies are – BAE Systems Plc, – Charles River Analytics Inc., – General Dynamics Information Technology, Inc., – IBM Corporation,- Leidos, – Lockheed Martin Corporation, – Northrop Grumman Corporation, – Raytheon Company, – SparkCognition, Inc., and – Thales Group


Key manufacturers of Ai systems in the US include Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, L3Harris Technologies, Inc., and Raytheon. The new defense strategy of the US indicates an increase in Ai spending to include advanced capabilities in existing defense systems of the US Army to counter incoming threats.


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