The Hyundai Motor Company’s corporate venturing and open innovation business is investing in Netradyne, a USA-based intelligent technology company specializing in fleet safety management software, in order to accelerate its development of automated driving systems.
The partnership between Netradyne and Hyundai CRADLE (Center for Robotic-augmented Design in Living Experiences) supports the South Korean automaker’s further development of SAE Level 3+ Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (L3+ ADAS) and Autonomous Driving (AD) features that it may launch over the next few years. Netradyne uses artificial intelligence (AI) vision-based dashcam devices, such as its widely-used Driveri unit, to monitor safety performance of fleet vehicles. The company’s system may also be used to crowdsource road and driving behavior metadata. Under the new agreement, Hyundai and Netradyne will collaborate to use the road and driving behavior data collected by Netradyne to support HD (high-definition) mapping and map updates for Hyundai’s development of future L3+ ADAS and AD features.
The costs associated with outfitting traditional mobile mapping system (MMS) vehicles, which are currently employed for HD mapping, make it challenging for many OEMs to place enough MMS vehicles on the road to provide the necessary frequency of HD mapping updates. However, Netradyne’s devices are more cost-efficient and numerous vehicle fleets throughout the country are currently equipped with the technology, potentially enabling more frequent, high quality HD map updates. Netradyne has already captured and analyzed over a million unique miles of the 2.7 million total miles of paved roads in the United States. This data includes numerous passes over the same roads to provide deeper insights into how driving and road different conditions may change throughout the year. In total, the company has collected more than 350 million miles of road data from professional drivers, which have all been analyzed with AI.
Due to be expanded globally, CRADLE strengthens Hyundai’s core automotive business and expands it into new and adjacent markets with the goal of enhancing transportation on and off the road. The automaker’s new partnership follows the announcement in September that it has formed an autonomous driving joint venture with Aptiv to advance the design, development and commercialization of SAE Level 4 and 5 autonomous technologies. The JV will begin testing fully driverless systems in 2020 and have a production-ready autonomous driving platform available for ‘robotaxi’ providers, fleet operators and automotive manufacturers in 2022. In December last year, Hyundai’s Mnsoft navigation software subsidiary formed a global partnership with Netradyne to develop HD maps to drive forward future vehicle technologies.
“Netradyne has advanced vision-based and AI driven technology for managing the safety of drivers and fleets,” said John Suh, vice-president of Hyundai CRADLE. “These systems can be leveraged as a reliable, high-quality crowdsourcing platform to support updating HD maps at a frequency high enough to support L3 autonomous vehicles.”
Avneesh Agrawal, Netradyne’s founder and CEO, said, “We’re very pleased to announce this partnership with Hyundai CRADLE. Our goal has always been to make the world a safer place to drive with our advanced AI platform. We’re glad that Hyundai shares this vision and are excited to support its development in advanced ADAS and Autonomous Driving innovation.”