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UC Irvine selects Velodyne Lidar’s traffic-monitoring solution

HIMaC² will leverage Velodyne’s Intelligent Infrastructure Solution to improve road traffic safety and efficiency

Velodyne Lidar has announced the University of California, Irvine’s (UCI) HORIBA Institute for Mobility and Connectivity² (HIMaC²) has selected its Intelligent Infrastructure Solution (IIS) to create a public road network platform.

Combining artificial intelligence (AI) and lidar sensors, Velodyne’s IIS helps predict, diagnose, and address road safety challenges under all weather and lighting conditions.

Per reports, HIMaC² will implement IIS at 25 intersections surrounding UCI and the adjacent city of Irvine, as part of a study to improve traffic and energy efficiency, road safety, and air quality.

Other contributors include Bluecity, Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), the UCI Institute of Transportation Studies, Toyota Motor of North America, Pony.ai, and Hyundai Mobis. Velodyne’s IIS deployment is further assisted by a $6 million grant HIMaC² received from the US Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO). 

By implementing advanced infrastructure monitoring as a V2X (vehicle-to-everything) solution, HIMaC² will gather and synthesize critical data needed to optimize routes and improve traffic flow. HIMaC²’s study also focuses on ensuring safety for vulnerable commuters, regardless of weather and lighting conditions. 

“The HIMaC² program is tackling one of the most challenging and pervasive infrastructure problems that cities face — how to improve traffic flows and safeguard road users,” said Jon Barad, vice president of business development at Velodyne Lidar. 

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Barad added, “Velodyne believes that smart infrastructure integrated with connected and autonomous vehicles have the potential to deliver game-changing improvements in roadway efficiency and safety. We look forward to working with the HIMaC² team to explore how to create a more sustainable, safer future for our transportation infrastructure.”

Commenting on user privacy, HIMaC² said Velodyne’s lidar sensors do not track or capture individuals’ facial characteristics, an important consideration in civic applications. Additionally, HIMaC² plans to build a public road network platform to support developing, evaluating and deploying emerging connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) technologies.

“The program looks to advance connected and autonomous transportation and show how they can contribute to smarter, safer infrastructure for our communities,” said UCI Engineering Professor Scott Samuelsen, principal investigator in the HIMaC² program. 

“By deploying Velodyne’s automated monitoring and control in an intersection network, backbone data can be generated and utilized to demonstrate improved safety, energy efficiency and traffic flow to which cities aspire. With its deployment at 25 intersections, this initiative will be the largest lidar-based traffic monitoring solution in the world.”

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