As Peter Rander, President of Argo AI (now owned by Ford) writes in his Medium blog post, Ford has now expanded testing of their upcoming self-driving vehicle technology, encompassing five total cities—Miami, Washington D.C., Palo Alto, Pittsburgh, and Detroit. Moreover, their new third-generation test vehicle—based on the Ford Fusion Hybrid—brings new equipment to further elevate the technology.
The third-generation machines offer a new sensor suite with cameras and radar sets that sport higher dynamic range and better resolution. Due to these improvements in conjunction with more advanced software, the autonomous machine can now see farther ahead and more easily classify objects. Further, there’s a wholly new computer system onboard that boasts both greater processing power and enhanced thermal management systems, the latter of which reduce heat and noise inside the cabin.
Just as impressive as the above is the fact that the third-generation vehicle now provides redundant braking and steering systems that can maintain appropriate motion control even if one of the units fails. Impressive stuff!