Elon Musk

Elon Musk: 'The Fighter Jet-Era Has Passed'

The technology entrepreneur predicted drones will be the future of air warfare and technology.

Elon Musk

Technology entrepreneur Elon Musk has claimed "the fighter jet-era has passed", predicting drones will be "where the future will be".

He was speaking about the future of air warfare and technology with Lieutenant General John F. Thompson, Commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles, during the Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Florida.

"Locally autonomous drone warfare is where the future will be," said Mr Musk.

"It’s not 'I want the future to be this' – it's just, this is what the future will be."

He added that it would be preferable to "retain the authority to damage or destroy anything that isn't an autonomous drone", before proclaiming: "The fighter jet era has passed."

Mr Musk also suggested having a competitor to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter programme would be a good thing.

"It's not good to have one provider - it's good to have competition, where that competition is meaningful and somebody can actually lose," he said.

Mr Musk later added to these comments, posting on Twitter that "the competitor should be a drone".

He said the drone should be "remote-controlled by a human, but with its maneuvers augmented by autonomy".

"The F-35 would have no chance against it," he said.

Cover image: Elon Musk speaking during an event in January (Picture: PA).