Defense Science Board Recommends that DOD Accelerate Adoption of Autonomous Systems

Cougaar Software, Inc. (CSI), an innovative technology company in the Washington D.C. area specializing in cognitive computing and distributed intelligent agent solutions, applauds the release of the Defense Science Board’s 2016 summer study on autonomy.

At the request of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics (USD(AT&L)), the Defense Science Board (DSB) conducted a study on the applicability of autonomy to Department of Defense (DoD) missions.

This study concluded that DoD must accelerate its exploitation of autonomy–both to realize the potential military value and to remain ahead of adversaries who also will exploit its operational benefits.

Autonomy, as defined by this study, results from the delegation of a decision to an authorized entity to take action within specific boundaries. To be considered an autonomous system, a system must have capability to independently compose and select among different courses of action to accomplish goals based on its knowledge and understanding of the world, itself, and the situation. The study concluded that autonomy results in significant military value including:

  • Providing opportunities to reduce the number of warfighters in harm’s way
  • Increasing the quality and speed of decisions in time-critical operations
  • Enabling new missions that would otherwise be impossible.

CSI builds autonomous systems by leveraging knowledge from artificial intelligence, computing, and robotics to provide next generation planning, decision support, and optimization systems for military and commercial customers. These solutions are built on CSI’s ActiveEdge® platform, a distributed, intelligent cognitive agent development framework based on the DARPA Cognitive Agent Architecture (Cougaar) technology. CSI improves user understanding and management of complex situations by using CSI’s cognitive computing technology in autonomous systems. These systems are able to operate in various environments and offer a variety of capabilities including:

  • Monitoring the environment
  • Learning various behaviors
  • Adapting based on different factors
  • Planning tasks based on constraints
  • Reasoning and drawing conclusions from large datasets

CSI has applied these concepts to military and commercial projects including C2 and logistics systems for the DoD and control systems in the oil and gas industry. Armed with CSI’s intelligent, automated, deep reasoning capabilities, users harness massive amounts of data to make better decisions, faster, and with greater confidence.