Beijing: China, taking aggressive steps in the fields of Hypersonic Missile development, Stealth technology and Space war has posed a new challenge in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) for the United States. Chinese army recently tested an unmanned tank. But as per the claims made by China in its mouthpiece, these tests will not end here and the tank will be equipped with Artificial Intelligence in the near future.
Chinese ‘People’s Liberation Army’ conducted the tests of the unmanned tank at an undisclosed location. The video published on the Chinese media showed a Chinese soldier controlling an old Russian ‘Type-59’ tank with the help of a remote control on an airstrip. This ‘Type-59’ tank is in service in the Chinese military since 1950.
The tank has been used in the US-Vietnam war, 1971 Indo-Pak war and the following China-Vietnam war. Seven decades ago, there were about 9500 tanks of this type with the Chinese military. Around 5000 ‘Type-59’ tanks are claimed to be in service currently with the Chinese army. Therefore, the analysts had termed these tanks as a liability for the Chinese army who are the largest spenders for defence preparedness, second only to the United States.
The Chinese mouthpiece has claimed that the tanks will become more lethal if they are equipped with AI. The Chinese army is in consultation with experts in the field to connect these tanks to the fighter jets and the satellites in order to make them more invasive and battle-ready as compared to the manned tanks. The Chinese mouthpiece has informed that the proposal to equip these tanks with AI is under serious consideration. The Chinese mouthpiece has claimed that the tanks equipped with AI will even challenge the United States.
The Chinese ‘State Council’ had announced last year that it would be stressing more on AI. ‘When the other countries are taking big steps in the field of AI, China cannot afford to lag behind and China has to emerge as the centre for new projects in AI,’ was the announcement made by the Chinese State Council. Therefore, the claims of the Chinese mouthpiece are being taken seriously.
The United States, Russia and Israel are the leaders in AI. The United States tested ‘Cannon’, the tank equipped with AI, ten years ago. This tank can be dropped in any area with a parachute and be controlled with the help of a satellite. The US analysts had claimed that this tank has the capacity to search and destroy the enemy locations.
It was reported last year that Israel had deployed military vehicles equipped with AI for its border protection whereas, Russia also has initiated testing similar tanks and vehicles. The video released in the Chinese news channels only shows the tank being run. Therefore, some Chinese analysts themselves have questioned the capability of the tank to carry out an attack on the enemy.
Meanwhile, this is the third Chinese test of an unmanned vehicle in the last one month. Before this, China had tested an unmanned patrol ship after testing an unmanned helicopter.