Source: Semcon announcement

BORÅS, Sweden – Semcon is a partner in a new research project funded by Vinnova which aims to devise analysis methods and processes for continuous development of safe connected and automated vehicles.

Considering a car finished when it leaves the factory is something of an outmoded approach nowadays. Vehicle systems will need to be updated and gradually improved as more is learned about the actual on-road safe operation of autonomous vehicles.

“We hope the results from this research can be applied as soon as possible,” said Fredrik Warg, project manager and senior researcher at RISE (Research Institute of Sweden). “Stringent demands are made when working with agile development and continuous updates of complex, safety-critical functions, and working methods in the automotive industry need to change as a result. This is something we want to help with.”

Related post:
Auburn Opens Autonomous Vehicle Research Facility

This new research project, funded by Vinnova involves nine companies and research organizations, with an objective to devise new approaches and working methods to support agile development of safety-critical systems, in particular concerning connected and automated vehicles. The results will be presented in the form of scientific articles.

Machine learning in safety-critical applications

Semcon is participating in all six of the project’s subprojects and is responsible for one of them; the subproject focusing on the demands made of vehicle components that involve machine learning (ML).

The use of ML algorithms in Autonomous Driving (AD) applications presents many challenges from a safety perspective. Specifically, the study will be examining questions such as: How do we define safety-critical requirements in respect of ML, and how should we meet these requirements? Can we train sensor systems to detect routes without obstacles, instead of detecting obstacles in the road?

Man and machine working together

Semcon is also contributing experts in User Experience (UX) and behavioral sciences. The autonomous systems will require continuous updates, so it is important to consider the human aspect as well: how will people react to cars suddenly being able to drive themselves in environments where this was not possible the day before?

“When it comes down to it, our research is all about resolving a number of safety challenges that are absolutely crucial to deal with if we are to see autonomous vehicles on our roads at all,” said Stig Ursing, Senior Safety Expert at Semcon. “We are pleased and proud to be able to contribute our expertise to this vital work.”

The emphasis in this project is on road vehicles, such as cars and trucks, but one of the subprojects is also focusing on other autonomous vehicle types used in restricted areas such as mines, ports and airports – something that Semcon has extensive experience of working with thanks to its Applied Autonomy offering.

About the SALIENCE4CAV research project

SALIENCE4CAV stands for “Safety lifecycle enabling continuous deployment for connected automated vehicles”. This project is partly funded by Vinnova as an element in its cooperation program FFI – Strategic Vehicle Research and Innovation. The project is headed by RISE and will be taking place between January 2021 and June 2023. Project partners are Agreat, Comentor, Epiroc, KTH, Qamcom, RISE, Semcon, Veoneer and Zenseact.