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CES: Indy Autonomous Challenge Unveils Autonomous Vehicle Development

by Pieter Werner

The Indy Autonomous Challenge (IAC), known for its work in high-speed autonomy, announced at CES 2024 the launch of its new autonomous vehicle platform, the IAC AV-24. This platform is designed to enhance the performance of autonomous racecars, aiming for speeds over 190 mph. The IAC AV-24 is expected to play a crucial role in accelerating the development of AI drivers for safe operation at high speeds.

The development of the IAC AV-24 involved collaboration with various autonomous hardware and software providers. Contributors to this project include Bridgestone, Cisco, Continental, dSPACE, Luminar, Marelli, New Eagle, NI, VectorNav, and others. Their collective efforts have led to the inclusion of several innovative features in the IAC AV-24, such as a 360-degree long-range LiDAR vision system using Luminar Iris sensors, advanced 4D radar perception using Continental ARS540 sensors, and a high-fidelity digital twin simulation of the IAC AV-24 for AI driver training.

After three years of development and over 7,000 miles of high-speed racing, the IAC’s engineering team has enhanced the robot inside the IAC AV-24. This advancement is expected to increase the functionality and performance capabilities of the world’s fastest autonomous racecar. Paul Mitchell, president of the Indy Autonomous Challenge, highlighted the evolution of the AI drivers and the potential of the IAC AV-24 in pushing the limits of performance and technology.

In addition to the on-track developments, the IAC is also working with dSPACE to develop a sophisticated Software-in-the-Loop (SIL) simulation tool. This tool will be used for training AI drivers and transitioning learning from simulation to real-world scenarios. The simulation tool, which is expected to launch in spring 2024, will be available to current IAC University Teams for developing and testing their AI drivers.

The IAC has also announced its 2024 schedule, which includes a return to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and partnerships with the Milan Monza Motor Show (MIMO) and the Goodwood Festival of Speed (FOS). At these events, the IAC aims to demonstrate the capabilities of autonomous vehicles in high-speed racing and hill climb challenges.

These initiatives by the IAC reflect its commitment to advancing high-speed autonomous mobility. Through collaborations with industry partners and participation in historic global racing events, the Indy Autonomous Challenge is set to continue its pursuit of innovation in the realm of autonomous vehicle technology.

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