Plane with no pilot - level 3
Wait a minute! They've forgotten the pilot! In fact, they haven't. They've remembered they don't actually need one.
This test flight starts off successfully with a picture perfect take-off. The Q-F-16 fighter jet heads out to the Gulf of Mexico, and at 40,000 feet performs aerial maneuvers that pilots would have to make, including barrel roles while pulling 7Gs, all remotely-controlled back at the Tyndall Air Force base in Florida.
Boeing released this video suggesting the unmanned jets could be used to train future fighter pilots and give them something to fire on. The firm also said the jet could carry out moves at 9Gs, which could cause physical problems for a pilot, although Boeing added that the plane would be able to self-destruct if problems occurred. Six QF-16s have been modified to fly unmanned. The one used on this occasion had been out of service for 15 years.
But not everyone is convinced this is a good idea. The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots has warned against using them in warfare, saying they'll become weapons of automated killing.
Difficult words: jet (fast plane), aerial (in the air), warfare (fighting in a war).
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