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Trimble joins VSI Labs in autonomous vehicle research

Photo: Trimble

Photo: Trimble

Trimble to provide reliable in-lane positioning for the year-long research program

Trimble and VSI Labs have formed an alliance, with Trimble serving as the GNSS precise positioning supplier for VSI’s autonomous research vehicle program. The alliance officially kicked off in March at Destination ACM, a long-distance driving event for VSI’s research vehicle that continues with additional events throughout the year.

The collaboration provides the opportunity to showcase Trimble RTX technology as the trusted precise-positioning correction source for car manufacturers and their suppliers. Coupled with Trimble’s inertial positioning, Trimble RTX plays a pivotal role in a vehicle’s ability to maintain accurate and reliable lane-discipline during autonomous driving.

Destination ACM launched from VSI’s Minneapolis headquarters en route to the American Center for Mobility’s (ACM) test center in southeast Michigan where a day of testing and demonstration took place March 26.

“The integration of Trimble’s precise RTX positioning is a key element of VSI’s technology stack for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous vehicle (AV) applications,” said Stephen Ruff, general manager of Trimble’s On-Road Autonomy Division. “VSI Labs is a leading researcher of best-in-class technologies critical to autonomous vehicle development.”

Suitable for on-road driving applications, Trimble RTX corrections operate on a single, global network. Drivers are not subject to the coverage outages that can exist when relying on local positioning systems — requiring line-of-sight to a positioning source or radio/cellular/internet connections.

When occasional obstructions are present, such as a bridge, tunnel or deep urban or rural canyon, Trimble augments its precise GNSS positioning with inertial technology to maintain continuous positioning and orientation while on the road.

Trimble’s innovative GNSS positioning is being used on the road today by a number of automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers to improve the functional safety and performance of ADAS for passenger vehicles. Consumers have logged more than 7 million miles using Trimble RTX for lane-level positioning to date.

“VSI Labs is thrilled to have Trimble’s RTX technology on board,” said Phil Magney, founder and president of VSI. “Trimble’s positioning capabilities allow us to really expand our applied research on the safety and performance of autonomous and ADAS driving solutions.”

Trimble GNSS positioning technology will be used in the VSI research vehicle during each of the quarterly Destination ACM events, the Drive World Conference in Silicon Valley in August, the VSI 2021 “Drive South,” and other events this year.

For more about autonomous vehicles, see our June issue.

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