Several universities in the US have joined forces to support development and promotion of ADAS and autonomous driving, with dedicated education programs for students and a competition known as the AutoDrive Challenge. A dedicated team of faculty members and students take the challenge to develop an L4 autonomous vehicle prototype that can navigate simulated real-life driving scenarios through various tests at Mcity, a state-of-the-art test ground in Michigan where researchers, automakers, and suppliers test smart mobility projects.
In this context, of course, lidar technology has a pivotal role as key success factor. As an official sponsor and the only lidar supplier in the program, Cepton will provide high-performance lidar solutions to the teams to enable their integrated systems. Cepton will also work closely with the participants to help them realise and apply lidar’s capabilities.
Cepton CEO Dr. Jun Pei says “We are pleased to support AutoDrive Challenge II as a sponsor and the exclusive lidar supplier; we felt this program offered us a fantastic opportunity to help advance the lidar education in both the automotive industry and academia”. SAE AutoDrive Challenge program manager Zac Pace says “We are happy to have Cepton as part of the new season of AutoDrive Challenge. This is the first time we will provide participating teams with directional lidars for their autonomous vehicles”. And GM’s AV lidar and camera technology engineering leader Erik Nordstrom says “Bringing together technology companies, solutions providers, and universities is key to ensuring that the AutoDrive program remains successful. Not only does the addition of Cepton help to make the program more rewarding for students, but will help enhance advanced technology curriculum and cultivate the next generation of technology leaders”.
Through the AutoDrive Challenge II program, Cepton will be supporting teams from Kettering University; Michigan Technological University; North Carolina A&T State University; Pennsylvania State University-University Park; Queen’s University; Texas A&M University; Ohio State University; University of Toronto; University of Wisconsin-Madison; Virginia Polytechnic Institute, and Virginia State University.
This is an attractive initiative to motivate students toward careers in the automotive industry. A great opportunity, too, for participating companies to engage strong talent for their enterprises.DVN-L comment