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BQ-3 Ghost
Role Stealth Bomber/Spy/Gunship
National origin Franco-German Commonwealth
Manufacturer Dassault Aviation
First flight Concept Flight: March 2010
Introduced Unknown
Status Unknown
Primary user Franco-German Air Force
Number built 21 built

40 ordered

Unit cost $800 million

The BQ-3[NAME CHANGE?] is an unmanned stealth bomber that uses a long-range recently developed piloting system, recently developed by Dassault.

Remote Control Piloting System (RCPS)[]

The BQ-3 was the first aircraft in the world to use the RCPS, a preferred Franco-German substitute to advanced unmanned aircraft. Due to the realization of the limits of AI technology in UAVs and a fear of developing sentient AI programs in weapons platforms, in the 1990s German scientists worked on this piloting system that might have made them a major aerial power, while still fitting into the lethality reduction mentality that had been sweeping through Western military circles. When the Franco-German Commonwealth was formed in 2010, it inherited the technology and swiftly pushed it into production.

The system uses a complex set of control mechanisms programmed into the plane, matched up to a traditional looking cockpit in a top-secret military base in FGC territory or some hidden military vehicle. The pilot can steer the aircraft with relative ease, giving it commands as if he were actually in the aircraft. Such a level of complex decision making would have been impossible with drones.

The main advantages of removing the "cockpit" from the aircraft lie mainly in the fact that the system takes the benefits of an umnanned aircraft and the benefits of manned aircraft and merges the two into a seemless pair.

Unmanned systems have the advantage of persistance and disposability, but lack the intelligence and situational awareness to perform truly complex missions with real discernability (the MQ-9 Reaper often fails to effectively distinguish between civilians and military targets, whereas increased situational awareness by use of sensors on the underside of the aircraft help to eliminate this problem). That is why a pilot was given more control of the aircraft, even its flight to its destination. This creates a situation where decision making is more carefully thought out, and it is harder to just kill someone with the push of the button. However, simultaneously, FGC military officials can be sure they have the right target and make their decision quicker and more accurately due to the BQ-3's sensory equipment.

If the piloting installation is under attack, the aircraft can be put on autopilot, and a standard drone AI will take over temporarily and finish the mission to the best of its ability. This feature is highly discouraged, and is being considered for removal so as to prevent the temptation of just leaving the BQ-3 unmanned for the whole mission.

This system was also designed to be easier to create legislation for in international law, whereas fully automomous platforms create all sorts of ethical issues, including the issue of who is accountable when a drone kills by accident a civilian. Putting an extra formality toward the task of piloting an unmanned aircraft reduced the number of careless mistakes.

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