Intel Invests in Self-Driving Car Technology

ZMP, a Japanese robotics company who in 2006 released the humanoid robot ‘nuvo’ and who is working on autonomous vehicle technology, has gained investment from Intel Capital.

While the exact amount invested hasn’t been disclosed the investment made from the Intel Capital Connected Car Fund will be used to help ZMP accelerate the development of autonomous and assisted driving technologies.

Hisashi Taniguchi, CEO of ZMP, said: “ZMP sees its ultimate goal for automobiles as a fully autonomous car. The company is engaged in research and development with the aim of making driving safe, enjoyable and convenient for all members of society via fully autonomous cars.

“Particularly important elements in advanced driver assist systems (ADAS), which is a core research and development area, are higher compute capability and better parallel processing technologies, thus ZMP is excited about collaborating with Intel, which is the global leader in computing. We believe that we can further accelerate the research and development in autonomous cars and take the first step in expanding our business worldwide through this investment.”

Self-driving or autonomous cars could be ‘the next big thing’ in the automotive would. Allowing a computer to take control of moving people around cities and towns has numerous advantages from increased efficiency as the cars can get closer together, fewer cars needed to move the same number of people around and fewer accidents.

The RoboCar MV is the research and development platform for ZMP's technology.

The RoboCar MV is the research and development platform for ZMP’s technology.

Many manufacturers including Ford, BMW, Nissan and Tesla are looking into the introduction of these types of cars. At the heart of all of these projects however, is data and the ability to process all of the various inputs and take action based upon them.

Elliot Garbus, VP and GM of Intel’s Automotive Solutions Division, said: “Intel and ZMP share a goal to bring the safety and convenience of autonomous vehicles to all drivers. A tremendous amount of computing capability is required to deliver advanced driving experiences, including managing sensor networks, conducting real-time data analytics, and turning that data into actionable information. By utilising Intel technology, ZMP can push the limits in automotive innovation and deliver technology that will enable safer driving experiences.”

ZMP was founded in 2001 and develops autonomous driving technologies including sensor systems, visitation and analytics, field operations tests and connected car informatics.


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