Today, development of automated driving systems is vigorously underway worldwide, and in the years ahead, dramatic capability improvements and increasing adoption of such systems are anticipated. To ensure their safe and secure operation, it must be verified that sensors and systems will function normally under the diverse natural environments that highly automated vehicles will encounter; moreover, needs are expected to increase in the coming years for testing under all possible weather conditions.
In response, three MHI Group companies and IDIADA will jointly develop an indoor integrated environmental testing facility enabling high-precision testing of highly automated vehicles under any freely chosen combination of natural environments (snow, fog, rain, glare, etc.) and driving conditions, plus a system that enables comprehensive verification in virtual environments. The aim is to contribute to shortening the development time and reducing development costs of automated driving systems for automotive OEMs and sensor manufacturers.
In developing the targeted integrated environmental testing facility, the three MHI Group companies will each contribute their proprietary technologies: MHI, its radar wave reflection and dispersion control technologies; MHI Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration, its environmental testing technologies for air-conditioning and refrigeration units; and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Machinery Systems, its system integration technologies relating to automotive testing systems.
MHI Group, as part of its growth promotion strategy delineated in its 2021 Medium-Term Business Plan, is currently taking steps to develop its solutions business in mobility and other new areas. The new project is one of an array of initiatives being taken focused on infrastructure to support “CASE” era automobiles. Going forward, working in collaboration with IDIADA, IDIADA and MHI Group will pursue establishment of a global standard in automated vehicle testing and verification systems as a way of contributing to the broad adoption of safe and secure automated driving systems.
“CASE” is an acronym derived from the words “connected,” “autonomous/automated,” “shared” and “electric.” It refers to the current technological trend in the automotive industry to create next-generation mobility services offering outstanding safety and convenience.