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Simulator testing urged for advanced autonomous systems

British Parliament called for more real world testing of full autonomy

Published: November 25, 2017, 9:55 PM
Updated: November 29, 2017, 5:29 PM

Driving simulator

With more and more auto manufacturers trying out their autonomous prototypes on real-world roads, a global supplier of auto simulators is urging testing of autonomous vehicles on simulators in order to work out the safety bugs.

AUDI driving simulator

The call from Dutch company Cruden followed the presentation of the Budget by Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer (Finance Minister, if you will), which called for increased testing of autonomous vehicles on UK roads without human operators by 2021.

Cruden is the world’s leading designer, manufacturer and integrator of open architecture driving simulators for the automotive, motorsport, marine and motorcycle industries.

Mercedes-Benz S-Class Simulator

“We believe that extensive testing of the interaction between the driver and the car, with many different types of people, is required to get the necessary acceptance of the car’s decisions in handover moments and emergency scenarios,” said Jelle van Doornik, development engineer at Cruden. “Yet this is dangerous, expensive and time consuming to do with real people in real cars with real traffic. The only way to achieve this while processing large numbers of different drivers through a test programme is to use an advanced driving simulator.

The company believes in the need to perform repeatable and highly-effective testing on the next generation of autonomous driving, all the way up to stage 5 autonomous vehicles (where no driver intervention is required). However, it also believes that testing those advanced systems on public roads will put lives at risk, and urges the industry and governments to embrace simulator testing.

Super Cruise hands free driving

“Through sophisticated, realistic driving simulators, Cruden can offer a driver-in-the-loop simulator to test advanced driver-assistance systems and autonomous vehicle systems that will reduce costs and development time,” said van Doornik. “We invite car manufacturers, regulators and psychologists to get in touch to discuss how driving simulation can help the development of autonomous vehicles. We look forward to helping to shape this exciting new era of mobility.”

“Simulators are already widely in use in the automotive industry as a way of reducing vehicle development time and costs, and now the advent of (advanced driver-assistance systems) is increasing their role,” concluded Cruden CEO, Maarten van Donselaar.