Heavy Lifting

Getting recent attention among aviation industry actors is the automation of cargo via unmanned aerial vehicles (“UAVs”) capable of “obstacle avoidance and dynamic replanning.”  In an article entitled “Automated Resupply,” Aviation Week & Space Technology writer Graham Warwick notes that Autonomous Technologies for Unmanned Air Systems (“ATUAS”) (read unmanned helicopters) can fly in to battle area, identify a cargo load, autonomously attach its hook and fly away.

A great example of autonomous machines doing the dull, dirty, and dangerous work of military cargo operations.

These systems, principally the K-Max, are earning their wings in Afghanistan, but not everybody is an advocate for such technology.