Driverless safety concerns

Louise Smyth

Following the UK budget by The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, Cruden is calling for the UK automotive industry to utilise driving simulators for safer, cheaper and more controllable testing for driverless cars.

The bold reforms state that the government state that the government wants to see developers testing vehicles on UK roads nationwide without a human operator by 2021.  Cruden believes that testing driverless technology in a repeatable and highly effective environment, without risking human injury, can only be done in a driving simulator.

Discussing the Budget, Jelle van Doornik, development engineer at Cruden said, “This announcement is a large step in recognising the need for next-generation driverless car testing. However, to get repeatable and controlled testing for vehicles, it cannot be completed on UK roads with real traffic without risking accidents; hence the need for the industry to embrace simulator testing.

“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. 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.

“Through sophisticated, realistic driving simulators, a driver-in-the-loop simulator to test advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous vehicle systems that will reduce costs and development time.” 

Cruden’s CEO, Maarten van Donselaar, added: “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 ADAS is increasing their role.”

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