TOYOTA RESEARCH INSTITUTE SUPPORTS DEVELOPMENT OF OPEN SOURCE AUTOMATED DRIVING SIMULATOR

The Toyota Research Institute (TRI) is increasing its support of open source platforms by donating $100,000 to the Computer Vision Centre to help accelerate the development of CARLA (Car Learning to Act), a simulator for automated driving.

“Technological advances and growth are made possible through collaboration and community support,” said Vangelis Kokkevis, Director of Driving Simulation at TRI. “Fostering the development of a common, open simulation platform will allow TRI and our academic and industrial partners to better exchange code, information and data.”

CARLA is hosted on the GitHub software development platform and its development is directed by the CVC at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) in Spain. A non-profit, open source simulator, it is used for the development, training and validation of automated urban driving systems. It is designed to ensure the stable behaviour of automated vehicles in many different situations that cannot always be tested in real-world environments, replicating many different environmental conditions and capable of being extended and modified to suit specific project requirements.

The team behind CARLA plan to use TRI’s donation to expand its engineering team and the simulator’s capabilities.

Dr Antonio López, responsible for the project at CVC, said: “CARLA has been created to democratise research on automated driving, supporting the training and testing of AI drivers beyond real-world limitations. The joint work of CARLA engineers, artists and scientists is making this possible. Obviously, we need to keep working to allow CARLA to reach full maturity, and this is why the sponsorship from Toyota is highly valued.”

CARLA is another major commitment by TRI to an open source platform. The company has made significant donations for the past two years to the Open Source Robotics Foundation (OSRF), which provides the global robotics community with access to open source software and development tools. TRI is also the primary contributor to Drake, an open source C++ toolbox created by the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab for analysis of the dynamics of robots and building control systems.

More information about CARLA is available at Carla.org.

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