Microsoft’s AI lets gliders stay aloft

Microsoft is using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to empower autonomous gliders take decisions while they are aloft and has conducted a successful flight test in the US state of Nevada.

More about the autonomous gliders:

  • Guided by computer algorithms that learned from onboard sensors,predictedair patterns and planned a route forward, these gliders could seek out thermals — columns of rising hot air — and use them to stay aloft.

  • Microsoft plans to build an autonomous aircraft that can eventually ride the air for hours or even days at a time while consuming very little power and help scientists track weather patterns, monitor farm crops or even deliver the internet to places where it is otherwise unavailable. 


  • Microsoft’s project is a step towards self-driving vehicles “that are nimble enough to handle all the unexpected behavior that human drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians bring to public roads.

  • With a glider, you can test these algorithms with minimal risk to people and property,

Using similar methods, Google has built high-altitude internet balloons that can stay aloft for months on end.


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