SEOUL, South Korea's Air Force on Thursday unveiled a comprehensive plan to build "smart" air power featuring cutting-edge technologies, such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality and the Internet of Things.

Under the plan, the armed service seeks to back government efforts to keep abreast of the ongoing fourth industrial revolution, a fast-paced transformation marked by the convergence of new technologies.

It has set 16 tasks for the plan, including using facial or iris recognition programs for access to key installations; checking pilots' health through wearable medical systems; conducting drone-based security operations; and training plane maintenance staff with virtual reality or augmented reality programs.

The Air Force also seeks to establish a research center on unmanned aircraft, apparently to prepare for future combat scenarios that may involve both manned warplanes and drones.

"The master plan has been drawn up to back state and national defense policies and lead the efforts to employ information and communication technologies in the military," a senior Air Force official said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency