Freescale have announced they are launching a new chip designed to be used in self-driving cars. The S32V Vision Processor is a Quadcore ARM based processor and is capable of pulling in data from a number of sensors and process it quickly. It is perfect for automotive grade standards as it has a large amount of redundancy in its circuitry and has safeguards against wireless interference.
The first steps this chip will take is to improve 'driver assist' technology such as front and rear camera, pedestrian alerts and safety breaking. "Once these technologies are perfected, the way will be paved for fully autonomous self driving cars", Ray Cornyn, vice president of automotive engineering for
microcontrollers at Freescale, said."Autonomous driving cars are going to have a major social impact, we will move from assisting drivers to actively taking
control. We are not there now. But it’s not so far away."
Freescale are currently working on taking data from a front camera and adding pedestrian detection. Understandably this is a huge responsibility and needs to be absolutely perfect before being added to vehicles. Freescale hope the capabilities of the new S32V processor will allow these extra driver assist features to be developed quicker.
The recent merger between Freescale and NXP will further allow the two companies to work on automotive products with self driving cars the ultimate aim. Rather than being something from science fiction fantasy, with advancements like this processor from Freescale and other technology from the likes of Nvidia, NXP and Google, self driving cars will be with us sooner than we think!