Air Force floats contract for smarter satellites

The military is seeking a more grown-up version of its current satellites, one that can take care of itself, according to a new solicitation request.

It would seem that the military is tired of babysitting its satellites from thousands of miles away, and wants them to grow up and get a clue, according to Wired’s Danger Room blogger Lena Groeger.

While today’s satellites generally need a team of engineers to keep them updated and running, help them avoid space debris and process the data they collect – it takes a village, you know – the Air Force wants new satellites to be able to manage and care for themselves, according to its recent proposal.

Among the items on the Air Force’s wish list, the fully automated satellites would be able to determine any outside dangers to their health, discover, recognize and possibly address internal failures, and search for and act upon missile launches, all with little or no direction from their parental – err human – units.