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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
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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?