Garching – The start-up driveblocks is working on automation solutions for the commercial vehicle industry. It will present the latest version of its self-developed Mapless Autonomy Platform at CES in Las Vegas. Based on a modular approach, the software platform includes algorithms for object detection, environment perception, sensor fusion, and trajectory planning. The new version features enhanced functionality for fusing multiple sensor sources in the environment model and improving line and object detection. These new features will be showcased at booth #10175, North Hall, at CES.
Algorithms without high-accuracy maps as a success factor
“The strength of our software platform is that the vehicle’s environment is reconstructed based on sensor data at runtime rather than being taken from high-definition maps. These maps must be pre-recorded and streamed to the vehicle while driving. Our approach relies exclusively on sensor data, enabling better scalability, higher robustness, and increased safety in unknown driving situations, so-called edge cases.” says Stephan Matz, CEO, and co-founder of driveblocks.
Using this Mapless Autonomy approach, the software currently achieves a range of about 100 meters based on camera technology. By adding LIDAR and RADAR sensors, the range is expected to be increased significantly in the future.
Testing the algorithms under real conditions
Alexander Wischnewski, CTO and co-founder of driveblocks, explains the next steps in the development process: “After the primarily simulation-based development of the algorithms, the first tests were carried out at a pilot customer in December 2022. This knowledge is currently being used to prepare for extended real-world trials in the second quarter of 2023.”
These tests are to be carried out on a semi-hauler truck (shown below), which is currently being retrofitted with sensor and actuator technology for automated and autonomous driving and the partner pepper motion. After successful commissioning, experience is to be gained in regular operation through cooperation with a freight forwarder.