JOURNAL OF DEFENCE STUDIES

Debating Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems

Gp. Capt. Ajey Lele (Retd.) is Senior Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile.
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  • January-March 2019
    Volume: 
    13
    Issue: 
    1
    Focus

    Technology and the armed forces have a symbiotic relationship. Many technologies which are presently used in day-to-day life, like the Internet or navigation systems (global positioning system [GPS]), actually have a link to, or are derived from, military innovations. Artificial intelligence (AI) is one arena of present generation technology that militaries have been developing mainly for two purposes: first, for juxtaposing it on their existing defence architecture for its performance enhancement; and second, for developing new types of militarily instruments and weapon systems. The research and development to advance new lethal autonomous weapon systems (LAWS) has been bearing good results and a few such systems have already been fully operationalised. It is expected that ongoing advancements in LAWS is likely to establish a different context for their military applicability. This article discusses various aspects of autonomous and lethal autonomous weapon systems.

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