JAGUAR Land Rover is to open a smart city hub in Ireland to test self-driving cars and connected technologies.
The Future Mobility Campus Ireland (FMCI) near to the car manufacturing company’s Shannon software hub in County Clare, will be a collaborative testbed spread across 12km of public roads, where self-driving vehicles will share the streets with cars, pedestrians and cyclists.
John Cormican, General Manager for Shannon Ireland Jaguar Land Rover, said: “This partnership with FMCI provides us with a real-world facility to trial our emerging autonomous, connected, electrified and shared technology in a strategic location. Collaborating with top-tier software companies will allow us to develop our future systems more efficiently.”
Russell Vickers, CEO of FMCI, said: “The smart city zone provides a first-class facility for global companies to work together and develop world-leading technology, from autonomous vehicles to connected infrastructure. The testbed provides an opportunity to test in the real world and help answer some of the questions posed by the future of mobility in a collaborative and efficient way.”
JLR’s new facility created in collaboration with global software, mobility and telecoms companies, will harness valuable sensor data, simulate a variety of road environments and traffic scenarios and trial new technologies. It will also see the world’s first premium all-electric SUV, the Jaguar I-PACE, deployed for testing.
Traditionally such testing sites have been established overseas, but the FMCI provides Jaguar Land Rover with a key research site next to its Shannon software hub. The venture sees JLR collaborating with global tech companies including Cisco, Seagate, Renovo, Red Hat, Valeo and Mergon.
The testbed will advance the company’s research into autonomous, connected, electrified and shared vehicles and the real-world facility will be equipped with sensors throughout the site, along with high-accuracy location systems, a data management and control centre and self-driving prototype vehicles.
Smart junctions, connected roads, autonomous parking and electric vehicle charging as well as links to a 450km stretch of connected highway and a managed air traffic corridor for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from Shannon airport along the Shannon Estuary in Ireland, will be key features.
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