Mobileye, an Intel company, has announced plans to expand its automated, worldwide autonomous vehicle (AV) mapping test fleet to five new cities, including Detroit, with the goal of further developing safe, software-defined radar, and crowdsourced mapping technology.
Mobileye CEO Amnon Shashua reveals that vehicles already using the technology have mapped nearly 625 million miles (1 billion kilometers) globally and are adding nearly 5 million miles (8 million kilometers) daily. The company is a global leader in the development of computer vision, machine learning, data analysis, and mapping for advanced driver assistance systems.
Along with Detroit, the program will be soon be expanding to Tokyo, Shanghai, Paris, and New York City (pending regulation). Shashua explains their approach sets them up to further grab hold of the global AV market.
“The backing of Intel and the trinity of our approach means that Mobileye can scale at an unprecedented manner,” he says. “From the beginning, every part of our plan aims for rapid geographic and economic scalability — and today’s news shows how our innovations are enabling us to execute on that strategy.”
The trinity approach combines three of Mobileye’s technologies to create a sensing solution that it says is orders of magnitude more capable than humans. The company’s proprietary software algorithms and so-called EyeQ computer chips provide the program with a detailed representation of its surrounding environment from which it will identify potential collisions from multiple sources.
First, the Road Experience Management mapping technology differs from other approaches in how its attention to semantic detail allows it to understand and contextualize its environment.
Second, the rules-based responsibility-sensitive safety driving policy creates an AV that does not operate outside of the rules of the road. And lastly, True Redundancy, two separate and redundant sensing subsystems based on leading camera, radar, and LIDAR (light detection and ranging) technology to deliver the safest possible AV experience. This approach differs from others due to the separation of the systems allowing faster performance at a lower cost than a fused system.
Intel’s role in this process is to offer its expertise and capability to manufacture silicon photonics to build the LIDAR system-on-chip that Mobileye will begin implementing in their AVs starting in 2025.
The technologies will quickly detect vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, animals, and debris. It also is able to detect roadway markings such as lanes, road boundaries, barriers, and similar items; identify and read traffic signs, directional signs and traffic lights.
The technology will be a paradigm shift in AV system architecture that will allow a significant leap in performance, Mobileye states. The advances will lead to safer, more cost-efficient AV solutions with the help of the company’s crowdsourced mapping software, Shashua explains.
“This is really game-changing,” he says of the LIDAR technology expected in 2025. “And we call this a photonic integrated circuit, (or) PIC. It has 184 vertical lines, and then those vertical lines are moved through optics. Having fabs (fly away broadcast system) that are able to do that, that’s very, very rare. So, this gives Intel a significant advantage in building these LIDARs.”