Eric Trappier, Chairman & CEO of Dassault Aviation, and Patrice Caine, Chairman & CEO of Thales, received on Friday French Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly, and Joël Barre, Delegate General for Armament, at Dassault Aviation’s headquarters in Saint-Cloud, France.
Florence Parly was shown some of the concepts on which the “Man-Machine-Teaming” advanced study program (PEA MMT) is based. This design plan, awarded to Dassault Aviation (lead) and Thales (co-contractor) by the French defense procurement agency DGA, aims to develop the necessary Artificial Intelligence technologies for combat aviation of the future.
During her visit, the Minister of the Armed Forces was particularly able to see the “cognitive air system” concept, which is based on more autonomous functions onboard aircraft and on a Man/Machine relationship in which the human element is constantly maintained in the decision loop.
Florence Parly also met representatives of about a hundred French start-ups, SMEs, laboratories and research centers specialized in Artificial Intelligence, robotics and new Man/Machine interfaces. This ecosystem will be involved in the PEA, in partnership with Dassault Aviation and Thales, to develop cutting-edge algorithms and propose disruptive solutions.
Dassault Aviation and Thales thank the Ministry of the Armed Forces for its trust in such a highly strategic field. They are delighted to federate France's world-class Artificial Intelligence ecosystem around military aviation challenges.
The Man-Machine-Teaming advanced study program was notified to the companies by the DGA in January 2018. It will take place over three years and will involve Dassault Aviation (lead contractor, air combat system) and Thales (co-contractor, Human/System interface and sensors).
MMT aims, inter alia, to:
- Define future cockpits and independent systems
- Improve innovative technologies in Man/Machine teaming within the cognitive air system, particularly decision-making autonomy and machine learning
- Enhance concepts and technologies in the field of smart / learning sensors
With over 10,000 military and civil aircraft delivered in more than 90 countries over the last century, Dassault Aviation has built up expertise recognized worldwide in the design, development, sale and support of all types of aircraft, ranging from the Rafale fighter, to the high-end Falcon family of business jets and military drones.
In 2017, Dassault Aviation reported revenues of €4.8 billion. The company has 12,000 employees.