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Beyond human endeavour: The application of artificial intelligence in command-and-control

Systematic's data-centric AI-based SitaWare Insight being viewed by UK staff. SitaWare Insight is intended to support staff across intelligence, planning, and operations at all levels of command. It enables data from all domains to be combined and exploited. (Systematic)

Artificial intelligence (AI) can support commanders and staffs in their roles in numerous ways. It can ease the cognitive burden and reduce workloads through its ability to process vast amounts of information far more rapidly, consistently, and accurately than a human being. This is particularly applicable to intelligence analysis, which, as a major contributor to situational awareness, is a fundamental part of the process of command-and-control (C2).

Threat assessment, course of action analysis (CoAA), and the evaluation of likely effects from particular actions are all areas where AI can help refine the options available to commanders and staffs and support decision making across all command levels.

French company Preligens has applied AI for intelligence analysis in products that aggregate information from multiple sources of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) data, including satellite imagery, infrared imagery, full-motion video, and text. AI is used to accelerate the analysis process, with workflows, processes, and outputs that adhere to NATO Standardization Agreement (STANAG) and other standard formats.

Speaking to Janes at the Eurosatory 2022 exhibition in Paris, Arnaud Guérin, Preligens CEO, explained that the objective is to take unstructured data and make it searchable by an AI algorithm. “AI is very good at searching large quantities of data for specific items, so it speeds up the analyst's task,” he said. “However, you have to be careful to ask the right question in order to avoid bias and an incomplete result.”

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