San Diego drone tech startup raises $165M to build AI pilot
Shield AI, an artificial intelligence company focusing on drones and other autonomous aircraft, is on a mission to build “the world’s best AI pilot.” To that end, the San Diego startup has raised $90 million in equity and $75 million in debt as part of a Series E fundraising round. The funding values Shield AI at $2.3 billion.
The company’s AI pilot is called Hivemind. It enables swarms of drones and aircraft to operate autonomously without GPS, communications, or a pilot. While Shield AI’s primary focus is on disrupting the defense sector with this technology, the company is also eyeing opportunities in commercial aviation.
Hivemind employs state-of-the-art algorithms for planning, mapping, and state-estimation to enable drones to execute dynamic flight maneuvers. On aircraft, Hivemind enables full autonomy and is designed to run fully on the edge, disconnected from the cloud, in high-threat GPS and communication-degraded environments.