On 5 February, the Electronics Research Lab (ERL) of Volkswagen Group of America in Belmont, CA, hosted the 11th meeting of the Open Auto Drive forum. Nikolai Reimer, Senior Vice President and Executive Director ERL, and Mattias Unbehaun, OADF Speaker and TISA Executive Director, opened the meeting.
In their keynote ‘Autonomous Driving, past present and future’ Nikhil George and Subramanian Swaminathan from ERL first described the various autonomous demonstration vehicles developed by Volkswagen since 2005 and their successes in DARPA and other challenges. The second part of the keynote focused on the technologies required for autonomous driving with the key elements being sensors, connectivity and machine learning. The presentation illustrated very well the necessity of HD maps for making automated driving a reality – being also a core component connecting all OADF member organizations. The keynote was complemented by short presentations of two promising start-ups: ‘Helm AI’, providing deep learning solutions for autonomous driving, and ‘Applied Intuition’ offering infrastructures for the development, testing and deployment of autonomous driving.
In the introduction to OADF, Matthias Unbehaun re-called the objectives of the OADF, namely, to serve as global platform for sharing knowledge, networking and collaboration between all stakeholders in the automated/ autonomous driving realm. He announced that SIP-adus, the Japanese cross-ministerial program for enabling autonomous driving, has just become the 5th official member organization in OADF – next to ADASIS, NDS, SENSORIS and TISA. The inclusion of SIP-adus and the coordination and harmonization with this Japanese program is an important milestone for OADF.
Matthias Unbehaun’s introduction was followed by updates from the different standardization organizations: Jean-Charles Pandazis from ERTICO reported on ADASIS, Martin Schleicher from Elektrobit on the Navigation Data Standard (NDS), Prokop Jehlicka from HERE Technologies on SENSORIS, Matthias Unbehaun on TISA, Hiroki Sakai from the Mitsubishi Research Institute on SIP-adus and Matthias Unbehaun – as a proxy for Michael Scholz from DLR – on OpenDRIVE. The presentations were complemented by a report from Prokop Jehlicka on the achievements towards the metadata catalogue which aims at bridging different representations in standards relevant for autonomous driving.
In the afternoon, the meeting participants had the opportunity for detailed discussions on the ‘NDS next generation architecture’, on ‘highly reliable maps’ and on the ‘metadata catalogue’. The day was rounded up by a wrap-up by Matthias Unbehaun.
Again, the OADF meeting attracted many interested experts in the field and led to interesting and fruitful discussions. The 12th OADF meeting is planned for June 12 in Munich, Germany, and will be collocated with the first NDS public conference on June 13, 2019.