The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has demonstrated a brain-patterned chip aboard an unmanned aerial vehicle in an effort to develop a new intelligence gathering system, MIT Technology Review reported Tuesday.
Tom Simonite writes DARPA tapped into a team of HRL Laboratories, IBM and other researchers to experiment on a neuromorphic hardware that mimics the features of a human brain to gather intelligence.
The chip collected optical, ultrasound and infrared sensor data from the Aerovironment-built drone that used 576 silicon neurons during the flight test, according to the report.
Narayan Srinivasa, principal research scientist at HRL, told the publication the experiment supports the ideas that spurred the neuromorphic chip research initiative.
“This shows it is possible to do learning literally on the fly, while under very strict size, weight, and power constraints,” he said.
General Motors and Boeing, owners of HRL, also seek to develop neuromorphic chips to gather intelligence from various systems, Simonite reports.