The Pentagon may deploy self-driving vehicles in combat zones to reduce the risk for military personnel who need to deliver supplies to troops, according to a report on Bloomberg.com.
At an April hearing on Capitol Hill, Michael Griffin, the undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, told lawmakers that he envisions self-driving vehicles for the Army before self-driving cars on the streets, notes the report.
About 52% of casualties in combat areas can be chalked up to military personnel delivering food and fuel.
For several years, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has been funding research into self-driving cars and sponsored its first competition for the vehicles in 2004. But engineering the unmanned cars — and rolling them out on battlefields — remains something of a journey.
In addition to the technical challenges of developing the vehicles, the military's autonomous vehicles will also need to be regulated. The Pentagon has yet to address just how the cars would be regulated for safety, cyber security, privacy and liability, notes the report.