VW’s software company equips R&D fleet with high-performance computers

VW’s software company equips R&D fleet with high-performance computers

Technology News |
To speed up the development process for its software platform, Volkswagen's software company Cariad is equipping its fleet of development vehicles with sensors and high-performance computers powerful enough to map the company's future software platform. This gives developers the opportunity to work with real-time data and thus shorten development time.
By Christoph Hammerschmidt


The first development vehicles with this equipment are already on the road in Germany and in Silicon Valley in the USA. Now the development fleet is being expanded: Several hundred series-production vehicles of the Group brands will receive, among other things, a high-performance computer with a connection to the cloud as well as additional sensors. This enables the developers to access vehicle data from road traffic in real time. Several years before Cariad’s new group-wide software platform with corresponding functionality is launched.

With the launch of this development fleet, Cariad aims to lay the foundation for an extensive pool of real-time data for the development of its new software platform. “For the first time, we have the possibility to continuously record critical situations in road traffic, upload them to the cloud and train our algorithms with them. This iterative process is central to tailoring features and services to the exact mobility needs of users,” explains Cariad CTO Lynn Longo.

The fleet vehicles can constantly capture situations in road traffic with their new high-resolution cameras. Artificial intelligence systems run on the high-performance computers to analyse this data. They automatically recognise and filter those situations already in the vehicle that are particularly valuable for development. These corner cases rarely occur, but are crucial for the development of highly automated driving functions.

Once detected in the vehicle, the valuable camera recordings are uploaded to the cloud and are available to the development teams virtually in real time. They can use it to train their software and, as part of the so-called Big Loop, play it via over-the-air update into a separate, secure development environment of the vehicle computer. There, the improved systems can be tested under real conditions without compromising safety.

With the development fleet, functions of the new software platform can be tested at an early stage and successively brought to series maturity, the company says.


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