The traffic information and analytics company INRIX and the AutopleX consortium, led by Jaguar Land Rover, have been awarded £4.7 million to “significantly enhance autonomous vehicle (AV) capabilities in difficult traffic situations”.
The grant has been made by the UK’s Centre for Connected and Automated Vehicles in order to support the AutopleX work bringing together private sector, public sector and academic stakeholders, and multiple data sources to tackle navigation of complex road patterns and traffic conditions.
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.”
The AutopleX project aims to advance the capability of AV technologies beyond current SAE level 2 and 3 capabilities by combining three distinct data sources – on-vehicle sensors, information from/to infrastructure and real-time local dynamic mapping – to improve perception of a vehicle navigating complex junctions. AutopleX consortium members include Jaguar Land Rover, INRIX, Highways England, Ricardo, Siemens, Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) and University of Warwick.
“INRIX will provide road hazards, traffic speeds and restrictions that will be used to improve the safety and effectiveness of the vehicle executing complex maneuvers, including navigation of roundabouts and merging into traffic,” said Avery Ash, Autonomous Vehicle Lead at INRIX. “The ability for AVs to identify upcoming route and roadway conditions based on real-time data will significantly improve their overall driving performance.”
AutopleX will develop fully- and semi-automated vehicle technologies through simulation and public road testing both on motorways and in urban environments in the English West Midlands.
Mike Waters, Director of Policy, Strategy & Innovation at TfWM added: “The AutopleX project is a great opportunity to align benefits from the development of AV technology with some of today’s highway management challenges, where INRIX data can also improve our everyday operational intelligence. AutopleX builds on the Midlands Future Mobility CAV testbed environment and is another building block in our world class eco-system which makes the West Midlands the ideal place for CAV research and development.