Neurala’s office in Boston. The company, an artificial intelligence start-up, received an undisclosed sum from an investment firm backed by a state-run Chinese company. Credit Kayana Szymczak for The New York Times
New York Times: China Bets on Sensitive U.S. Start-Ups, Worrying the Pentagon
HONG KONG — When the United States Air Force wanted help making military robots more perceptive, it turned to a Boston-based artificial intelligence start-up called Neurala. But when Neurala needed money, it got little response from the American military.
So Neurala turned to China, landing an undisclosed sum from an investment firm backed by a state-run Chinese company.
Chinese firms have become significant investors in American start-ups working on cutting-edge technologies with potential military applications. The start-ups include companies that make rocket engines for spacecraft, sensors for autonomous navy ships, and printers that make flexible screens that could be used in fighter-plane cockpits. Many of the Chinese firms are owned by state-owned companies or have connections to Chinese leaders.
The deals are ringing alarm bells in Washington. According to a new white paper commissioned by the Department of Defense, Beijing is encouraging Chinese companies with close government ties to invest in American start-ups specializing in critical technologies like artificial intelligence and robots to advance China’s military capacity as well as its economy.
Read more ....
Update #1: China finds a new source of cutting-edge military technology: US start-ups (Fiscal Times)
Update #2: DoD concerned with Chinese investments in US high-tech startups (Defense News)
WNU Editor: Here is a sobering article on where this is all heading .... Be afraid: China is on the path to global technology dominance (David Dodwell, South China Morning Post).