Wind River program plans autonomous car test

Article By : Wind River

Wind River is leading a program that will test emerging technologies to know how symbiotic relationships between vehicles and infrastructure can improve communities.

Intel Corp. subsidiary Wind River is working with the Transportation Research Centre, Ohio State University (OSU), and the City of Dublin, Ohio in the advancement of smart, connected, and autonomous technologies. The collaboration will look into developing strategies and technologies that safely and securely increase the pace, quality, development, testing, and deployment of self-driving cars and other connected vehicle technologies.

The study will be focused around the Columbus region in central Ohio. “The Central Ohio region is an emerging hub for smart city and smart vehicle technologies, and our unique ensemble approach—uniting minds from academia, the public sector, and the tech industry—can set a standard for how communities can innovate mobility and use the learnings to impact vehicle development and deployment best practices,” said Marques McCammon, general manager of Connected Vehicle Solutions at Wind River. “To realise autonomous driving for the masses, a variety of players must come together with an aligned understanding.”

The group is planning to test emerging technologies to discover how a symbiotic relationship between vehicles and infrastructure can improve the lives of community residents. In addition to the self-driving cars themselves, the group plans to test technologies, such as vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, connected vehicle cockpit software, smart sensing and mapping and the associated data collection. With Ohio State students, researchers and faculty to play a key role, the collaboration is also intended to further develop the next generation of expert automotive minds.

The key objective for the project’s initial phase includes joint development and testing of autonomous vehicles or “rolling laboratories.” Wind River plans to spearhead the project development and contribute its software for safety-critical systems.

“From Mars rovers to trains, cars, and commercial and military aircraft, Wind River’s core business is developing and delivering mission-critical software. In exposing Ohio State and its students to this type of software and the processes that support the development of mission-critical applications, we hope their innovations can find a faster path to production,” said McCammon.

TRC is the largest independent proving ground and vehicle testing organisation in the Americas. It is home to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Vehicle Research and Test Center and acts as a one-stop research and development source for the entire auto industry. With expertise in areas such as crash, emissions, and durability testing, TRC can lead the validation process for the collaboration’s vehicles and be the hub for build and rigorous testing on its 4,500 acres of road courses and 7.5-mile high-speed oval.

“The first autonomous vehicle will be on the highway before the last driver vehicle comes off. So, really, part of the challenge is how do you mix the two. We can mix the two, on purpose in a safe and controlled environment here,” said Mark-Tami Hotta, TRC CEO and president. "Smart mobility, with connected vehicles and enhanced infrastructures, offers greater accessibility and mobility options, reduced road congestion, and more efficient use of natural resources.”

The OSU Centre for Automotive Research (CAR) team can provide hands-on support. OSU CAR focuses on energy, safety and the environment, with an aim to improve sustainable mobility. CAR emphasises systems engineering, advanced and unique experimental facilities, collaboration on advanced product development projects with industry, and a balance of government and privately sponsored research. In the planned collaboration, CAR faculty and students would be instrumental in the algorithm development and integration of the collaboration’s test vehicles.

“The Ohio State University has a long history of automotive research, and we welcome the chance to contribute to a project that could affect real change in the way the auto industry and governments address autonomous driving,” said Giorgio Rizzoni, director of the Centre for Automotive Research, Ohio State University. “By having our students get mentored by industry experts using state-of-the-art technologies in real-life scenarios, they are gaining priceless experience that can propel them forward on their future path.”

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