NVIDIA announced it will acquire DeepMap, a startup building high-definition maps for autonomous vehicles. Maps that are accurate to within a few meters are good enough when providing turn-by-turn directions for humans. AVs, however, require much greater precision. They must operate with centimeter-level precision for accurate localization, the ability of an AV to locate itself in the world.
Proper localization also requires constantly updated maps. These maps must also reflect current road conditions, such as a work zone or a lane closure. These maps need to efficiently scale across AV fleets, with fast processing and minimal data storage. Finally, they must be able to function worldwide.
High-definition mapping solution
DeepMap was founded five years ago by Wu and Mark Wheeler, veterans of Google, Apple and Baidu, among other companies. The U.S.-based company has developed a high-definition mapping solution that meets these requirements and has already been validated by the AV industry with a wide array of potential customers around the world.
NVIDIA DRIVE is a software-defined, end-to-end platform — from deep neural network training and validation in the data center to high-performance compute in the vehicle — that enables continuous improvement and deployment via over-the-air updates. DeepMap’s technology will bolster the mapping and localization capabilities available on NVIDIA DRIVE, ensuring autonomous vehicles always know precisely where they are and where they’re going.