Nvidia announces production ready AD reference platform

November 10, 2021 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Nvidia announces production ready AD reference platform
At its developer conference GTC, Nvidia presented the Hyperion 8 reference platform for autonomous driving (AD). Production vehicles equipped with it can be expected from 2024 onwards.

Hyperion 8 combines a computer architecture with a complete sensor set for self-driving systems as part of Nvidia's Drive family. This latest-generation technology is designed to provide the highest level of functional safety and cybersecurity and is supported by sensors from numerous leading suppliers including Continental (long-range radar), Hella (short-range radar), Luminar, Sony (cameras) and Valeo. Drive Hyperion is available today for 2024 vehicle models, Nvidia founder and CEO Jensen Huang announced at GTC.

The production-ready platform is open and modular, so customers can use what they need - from compute hardware and middleware to Level 3 Driving, Level 4 Parking and AI cockpit capabilities. With a functionally secure AI computing platform at its core, Drive Hyperion provides a secure foundation for autonomous vehicle development. During his keynote address at the GTC Keynote, Huang demonstrated a Drive Hyperion 8 vehicle based on a Mercedes model driving autonomously through everyday traffic in Silicon Valley.

Drive Hyperion is scalable: the current standard Drive Orin platform is designed to be upgraded when available with Nvidia Drive Atlan and DriveWorks APIs that are compatible across generations. Two Nvidia Drive Orin SoCs provide the necessary redundancy and resilience, as well as sufficient computing power for Level 4 self-driving and intelligent cockpit functions - even in the case that these functions should only be added later via a software update.

The Drive Hyperion 8 developer kit also includes Nvidia Ampere architecture GPUs. Their processing power provides developers with enough headroom to test and validate new software features, Huang promised. The Nvidia DriveWorks Sensor Abstraction Layer simplifies sensor setup with easy-to-use plug-ins, while the Drive AV software includes the deep neural networks for perception, mapping, planning and control.

The available sensor package for the reference platform includes 12 cameras, nine radars, 12 ultrasonic sensors and a Luminar lidar

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