What is the secret of the Israeli model of "Athena" to support tanks?

April 28, 2021
The IAI is looking to add the Athena program to robotic vehicles that can conduct automatic patrols to guard border fences in search of intruders. The IAI is looking to add the Athena program to robotic vehicles that can conduct automatic patrols to guard border fences in search of intruders.

Vision, Israel: - Israel is working to develop a "super brain" that works with artificial intelligence with the help of a group of high-energy sensors to support tanks and robots in patrolling during a military engagement, in light of its aspiration for a new generation of wars.

This model of artificial intelligence they called "Athena" after the Greek goddess of war, and at an early stage of development by the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), but it could be used within the next decade.

The Israeli Carmel tanks were equipped with an artificial intelligence the size of a smartphone, which collects data, through radar sensors, infrared sensors, in addition to other sensors, to identify enemy fighters hiding underground and in buildings on the battlefield. In an instant, the data is sent to the commanding officer and converted into a "battle list" with the best means to attack targets.

The Athena program could also be linked to maneuvering and fire control systems with tanks, which would allow the program to automatically attack targets, even if the commanding officer made the final decision on how to proceed.

Israel hopes that the defense systems operating with artificial intelligence, will help the army to be more efficient, as machines can analyze the battlefield and devise a tactical plan for the battle much faster than the human mind.

Senior IDF officers say that some aspects of AI war technology may be ready for actual use by next year.

Brigadier General Eli Birnbaum, commander of the Army’s Military Engineering Division, added that one of the main challenges in the future would be convincing soldiers to “trust the machine,” comparing this to safety concerns related to self-driving cars.

What is the Athena program?

It is just one weapon among a number of "artificial intelligence weapons" under development around the world, even though these projects are generally shrouded in secrecy.

These weapons include drones and missile guidance devices, while experts note that for decades armies have used weapons that automatically attack people, such as landmines.

For his part, Dr. Jack Walting, an expert on ground war at the Research Center of the Royal United Services Institute for Security and Defense Studies in London, explained that there is a kind of arms race currently between the United States and China, while the Russians are also conducting a lot of experiments, but they are a little late, he said.

“It's realistic and very accessible, but it doesn't have to be usable,” he added. This is partly because militaries are not necessarily sure of the implications of using it. ”

Artificial intelligence wars:

Israel is not the only Western ally exploring AI warfare.

In the United States, cadets program tanks with algorithms to target balloons that represent enemy soldiers.

Meanwhile, the commander of the British Armed Forces predicts in November 2020 that "robotic" soldiers could make up about a quarter of the army by the 1930s.

In 2020, Israel says it used an artificial intelligence machine gun to assassinate a top Iranian nuclear scientist.

It was reported that the scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, was liquidated by a machine gun controlled by the satellite, and artificial intelligence was used to target it.

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