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LIDAR scan of 30 miles of Coventry roads to test driverless pods

04 February 2016

WMG at the University of Warwick is to test driverless pods with a laser scan of Coventry roads as part of Intelligent Transport Initiative.

WMG at the University of Warwick is to use a laser scan of 30 miles of Coventry roads to test driverless pods as part of a newly launched research programme. WMG will work with RDM Group - the UK’s only designer and manufacturer of driverless Pods - in a project called INnovative Testing of Autonomous Control Techniques (INTACT).

The project, funded by Innovate UK, will enable Coventry based automotive innovation experts RDM to test its vehicles on one of the world’s most adaptable and advanced driving simulators at WMG.

“The vehicles will be tested on a state of the art simulator we have just installed in WMG," says WMG's Professor Paul Jennings. "It will use a LIDAR scan (essentially a high resolution laser scan of an environment) of 30 miles of real roads around the City of Coventry to the test vehicles in the simulator.

“The simulator can be configured so that different vehicles can be driven into it for testing, and the real world wireless environment will be recreated too. We believe both will be novel capabilities for such an advanced simulator.”

“It is fantastic that we have such advanced simulation technology at our disposal to analyse how driverless vehicles will react before being deployed in the real world," says David Keene, Chairman of RDM Group. “It will speed up the testing process considerably and help with the positioning of the sensors on the pods. Yet another example of how university and industry can work together to put the region and the country at the forefront of driverless technology.”

The WMG Simulator, currently situated in the International Manufacturing Centre, will permanently move to the National Automotive Innovation Centre (NAIC) in 2017. It will be the world's first immersive, simulated environment for smart and connected vehicles, which includes full emulation of wireless communications. The simulator will be a key facility for researchers working on autonomous, smart and connected vehicles.

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