This week I got the opportunity to revisit MCity and see the Robocar, an autonomous vehicle capable of driving at up to 200 kph. It was very interesting to talk to the team working on it, shedding insight into how the Robocar was put together, what design challenges they faced, and of course, what sensors they use to gather information about the Robocar and its surroundings. For example, the car uses multiple LIDAR sensors strategically placed so that it can detect objects all around it. It also uses other sensors like RADAR and a 360° camera. I was also very interested in the engineering problems they faced. For example, I was surprised to learn that the car, with everything on it, weighed a metric ton, but without the motors and battery, weighed only 400 kg. It was also interesting that they opted to use 4 individual motors - 1 for each wheel. As it stands, the more they are able to show that the car has good decision making and can drive autonomously at speeds at or exceeding 200 kph, the more excited I am for the future of autonomous cars.


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