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Planes That Fly Themselves?

Wed Sep 29, 2004 11:55 pm

With the technology we have now, how much can a plane do without a human pilot? Are there any aircraft that can land themselves? It got me thinking after watching Airport 1975 and how the jumbo was flying itself.  Smile
The next generation of aircraft is just around the corner!
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RE: Planes That Fly Themselves?

Thu Sep 30, 2004 12:03 am

Aircraft have been able to land themselves since the 60s, starting with the Trident and VC-10, in the UK.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
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RE: Planes That Fly Themselves?

Thu Sep 30, 2004 12:07 am

I was thinking as I read the topic and myself being a smartass I was going to say autopilot.

But ditto to what longhauler said...I am also sure that the military has a lot of prototypes and actual builds for computer guided and flown aircraft.

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RE: Planes That Fly Themselves?

Thu Sep 30, 2004 1:38 am

The USAF flew its unmanned Global Hawk from California to Australia and back a couple years ago. Seems perfectly reasonable to me that in the not-too-distant future (10 years?) the computer/datalink will fly the plane, the "pilot" will be the backup system, and who needs a copilot?