New self-driving car that can ‘see’ around corners to be developed in UK-based project

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Under a new US$6.5m (£4.7m) project, JLR is developing vehicles that can ‘see’ around corners and through obstacles. The AutopleX initiative, which will also involve partners Highways England (HE), Inrix, Ricardo, Siemens, Transport for West Midlands and Warwick University, will be funded by Innovate UK.

In order to enable self-driving cars to ‘see’ and ‘talk’ to each other, connected, automated and live mapping technology will be combined. Technology will also be developed that will enable these cars to communicate with all road users and obstacles where there is no direct view, effectively helping them see so they can safely merge lanes and negotiate complex roundabouts autonomously.

Chris Holmes, connected and autonomous vehicle research manager at Jaguar Land Rover, said, “This project is crucial in order to bring self-driving cars to our customers in the near future. Together with our AutopleX partners, we will merge our connected and autonomous research to empower our self-driving vehicles to operate safely in the most challenging, real-world traffic situations. This project will ensure we deliver the most sophisticated and capable automated driving technology.

Mark Garrett, chief operating officer at Ricardo, commented, “We’re really pleased to be part of the AutopleX team that has secured funding to focus on this crucial aspect of autonomous vehicle research. Autonomous vehicles offer the prospect of improved safety, efficiency and environmental sustainability of transportation.

“We look forward to working with our partners on the project which will, I believe, deliver some highly useful insights that help pull forward the implementation of this very promising technology.”

Vehicles will be evaluated in simulation and on real roads including on highways and in urban environments in the West Midlands.

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Rachel's career in journalism began around five years ago when she started working for UKi Media & Events, having recently graduated from Coventry University where she studied the subject. Her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the groundbreaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of the automotive and tire industries.

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