The U.S. military recently conducted an exercise that tests experimental technology, known as the Annual Navy Technology Exercise (ANTX). In my opinion, this year's exercise was pretty fucking awesome:
The exercise began with instructions issued from a ground control station to the Submaran, an unmanned surface vehicle (USV) developed by Ocean Aero. The USV relayed the instructions it received via an acoustic modem to a submerged autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), Lockheed’s Marlin Mk.2, which carried Vector Hawk as it cruised below the surface of the Bay.
Upon receiving a command order from Submaran, the Marlin AUV transited to a launch site as instructed, where it then surfaced. Once above water, the Marlin acted on further instruction to ready a canister containing a Vector Hawk. The canister received a GPS position, which was passed to the UAV. Then the top of the canister opened and the Vector Hawk was ejected from the canister, unfolding its airfoils and flying away.OK. In case you missed that, a surface vessel ordered a submarine to launch an aircraft, and none of the craft involved were manned. Mind blown.
I don't think there is any question that this kind of technology is going to play a huge part in modern warfare going forward. What blows your mind today will be commonplace tomorrow. Mind blown, again.