The StreetDrone concept was born a few years ago when we were approached to develop one-off vehicles for the testing by an autonomous software developer. At the same time we were working with an autonomous race series, and we were wondering how race teams would be able to test their self-driving code without endangering their extremely expensive vehicles. We didn’t want to do one offs, but the more we researched and understood the market, the more we realised how tough and expensive development and testing is for autonomous innovation, due to the great expense associated with any form of test platform.
As a result, we realised that, unlike the digital revolutions that had gone before it (e.g. Internet, Mobile Phones), the AV revolution is currently in the hands of only the richest players – namely the likes of GM, Tesla and Google. We think that this needs to change, and that development in the hands of the many is the best way forward. This results in StreetDrone’s aim to reduce barriers to entry for any aspiring business or institution developer AV technology.
What is your innovation?
Most of our IP is in the design and implementation of a full, level 2, drive-by-wire system, enabling any vehicle it is installed on to be driven autonomously via an open CAN network. The rest of our innovations are around the integration all the 3rd party technologies that make up the StreetDrone “autonomous platform” including sensors, compute, data networking and functional safety.