Self-driving car has taken a leap towards automatic 24/7 driving

ScienceDaily | 5/15/2018 | Staff
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Most likely, for the first time, robot cars from different manufacturers will demonstrate their driving scenarios in the same arena at the RobustSENSE event in Ulm, Germany, where Marilyn will head with six other robots on 16 May.

The latest additions to Marilyn include optical component wavelengths via the new 1550 nanometre LiDAR and additional intelligence for its software, which improves sensor capabilities. Furthermore, software modules have been built in for the filtering of point clouds and the assessment of scanner reliability. This is to ensure the vehicle's ability to function, including in fog and powdery snow, under which conditions the LiDAR radar, which 'sees' in the visible and near infrared ranges of the spectrum, even enables the robot car to see people better.

Marilyn - Vision - Metres - Fog - LiDAR

"Although Marilyn's vision is limited to roughly 30 metres in thick fog, the new LiDAR type allows the car to be driven slowly rather than having full stop," says Project Manager Matti Kutila of VTT's RobotCar Crew team.

The car also has traditional automotive radars and LiDAR, but their detection of non-metallic obstacles and resolution is limited, particularly when trying to recognise shapes.

Marilyn - Radar - LiDAR - Technologies - Aspects

"Marilyn can also combine radar and LiDAR technologies by optimising the best aspects of the different sensors. This makes the automatic vehicle safer than a car driven by a person -- although there are still lot of obstacles in development path, a major leap has been taken in the right direction," Kutila emphasises.

"We still have a long way to go on the journey towards 24/7 automated driving, but we are now a big leap closer to achieving our dream. If we think of this as a 42km marathon, we are now perhaps 10km closer to our goal," he comments.

Scenarios - Cities - Roads - Snow - Exit

More and more scenarios (such as cities, main roads, snow, exit ramps), which robot cars can manage, have been...
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