Sun, Sep 10, 2017 - Page 15 News List

Chinese start-up racing US rivals in driverless rigs

By Yan Zhang  /  Bloomberg

Waymo — spun off from Google’s self-driving car project — in June said that it is exploring integrating its hardware and software into a truck.

Uber’s truck division is focused on developing self-driving technology in the US, a media representative for the company said in an e-mail.

The US Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee is to hold a hearing on Wednesday to examine autonomous commercial vehicles and how they might fit into the Senate’s self-driving vehicle legislation.

US House of Representatives lawmakers passed a wide-ranging bill to speed the introduction of self-driving vehicles, applying only to passenger cars and light trucks.

Tusimple has raised a total of US$27.5 million so far from a group of investors, including Santa Clara, California-based Nvidia Corp, which also provides graphic chips to Tesla.

The start-up aims to raise another US$150 million before seeking an initial public offering in the next few years, Chen said, without giving a specific timetable.

In June, Tusimple completed a 320km Level 4 test drive from San Diego to Yuma, Arizona, using an Nvidia graphics-processing unit and cameras as primary sensors.

Level 4 is industry-speak for vehicles that can pilot themselves in almost all environments and will stop safely if the human driver does not respond to a request for them to take over.

The ultimate goal is Level 5 — no steering wheel, brake pedal or human required.

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