Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab are developing software that would enable autonomous vehicles to operate on unmarked roads without requiring intensive 3D mapping of the area.
MIT’s MapLite technology relies mainly on sensors (with some help from GPS), thus eliminating the time-consuming and expensive mapping process.
Such approaches haven’t been used in the past because they lacked the accuracy of 3D maps. But the MIT team claims MapLite can match the performance of a map-based system by using sophisticated modeling software, which categorizes a vehicle’s surroundings to determine how it should be controlled.
The researchers say their technology is in the early stages of development. They acknowledge it still needs improvement in some areas, such as the ability to navigate up a mountain road with dramatic changes in elevation. The team will present its research later this month at a robotics conference in Brisbane, Australia.
As part of Volkswagen’s diesel-gate settlement, the German automaker could help jump-start the electric market in the U.S.
The changing landscape requires not only new approaches to powertrains—but even new types of vehicles. Here’s how one supplier is addressing these changes.
To know that 3,000 cars have been delivered since October 2015 would undoubtedly result in a shrug: in 2017 Toyota delivered 387,081 Camrys, so that 3,000 is less than one percent, and this is in one year, not just over two.