GM readies Qualcomm-powered Ultra Cruise driver assistance for 2023 launch

Enlarge / A more in-depth take a look at the {hardware} contained in the Ultra Cruise pc.

General Motors

General Motors has partnered with Qualcomm to supply the computing energy for its next-generation hands-free driver-assistance system. First introduced in October 2021, the brand new system is known as Ultra Cruise, and it one-ups the (already very competent) GM Super Cruise by way of efficiency and operational design area.

Whereas Super Cruise is limited to restricted access, divided-lane highways, Ultra Cruise will at first function on greater than 2 million miles of roads within the US and Canada. An Ultra Cruise-equipped automotive will sense its surroundings utilizing a mixture of lidar, optical cameras, and radar to generate a sensor-fused 360-degree view of the world round it. It will acknowledge and react to everlasting site visitors management gadgets like cease indicators and site visitors lights, and it’ll even deal with left-turns, albeit with a bit driver enter.

Like Super Cruise, Ultra Cruise is a driver-assistance system (it falls below the SAE’s stage 2), and the human driver continues to be accountable for offering situational consciousness (with a driver-monitoring system ensuring that is occurring).

“We’ve taken a lot of time to engineer the [human-machine interface] in the vehicle. It’s an all-new dynamic display, trying to instill confidence that the car’s going to do what the driver sees and thinks it should do—and do it the same way every time,” defined Jason Ditman, Ultra Cruise’s chief engineer. “We need to be able to do it the same way over and over again, and if we can’t do it robustly, that’s why it’s nice to have the driver in the loop. That will bring the driver back in, do that complex maneuver, and then we’ll take control again.”

GM had already began working with Qualcomm on Ultra Cruise’s pc by the point we logged our first miles within the manufacturing model of Super Cruise in early 2018.

“In order to drive off the freeway—on the surface streets and in subdivisions—you need a different sensing architecture. We’re going with cameras, radars, and a lidar, and you need more of them, and they have to be different,” Ditman defined. “So the ability to process all of that information in real time and make decisions at the rate that you would make a decision as a driver—we needed a new compute. And these Qualcomm chips are at the heart of that compute.”

Specifically, there is a pair of Snapdragon SA8540P SoCs and an SA9000P AI accelerator, and the system is ready to carry out greater than 300 tera operations per second, processing and fusing the enter from the automotive’s numerous sensors. Additionally, Infineon gives an ASIL-D certified Aurix TC397 processor for system security.

Ultra Cruise debuts in 2023 in a brand new electrical Cadillac.

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