NXP Semiconductors N.V., a developer of next-generation car technology, recently announced a new partnership with Kalray, a top tier company creating processors for intelligent systems. This team up will use NXP's vital lineup of safety products for ADAS and Central Compute along with Kalray's intelligent MPPA processors. The new platform the two will create will focus in on performance, safety, and commercial needs for level 2 and 3 driving eventually seeking a long-term release for level 4 and 5 self-driving cars. The partnership also hopes to solve safety problems currently happening within the self-driving development process.
The autonomous driving ecosystem faces technology challenges and concerns related to the safety of self-driving vehicles. Recent research indicates that while consumers are enthusiastic about an autonomous future, many hold deep reservations about whether self-driving vehicles will ever be safe. This perception has been reinforced by high-profile accidents involving prototypes and experimental vehicles. To overcome these technology and consumer confidence gaps, the autonomous ecosystem needs fail-safe automotive systems that enable a vehicle’s central processing unit to protect drivers through a complex and heavily tested safety approach. NXP provides more than 25 years of expertise in the types of functional safety systems required to tackle autonomous driving.
NXP and Kalray have joined forces in a partnership to co-develop a central computing platform with safety as a foundation. NXP will offer the host processor of the platform, its high-performance S32 processor, with its safety critical ASIL D and ASIL B capabilities. This will help the platform tackle the requirements of automotive central computing and will target path planning functions. Kalray will deliver the world-class performance of its MPPA® processors to safely handle the machine learning aspects of perception.
The first example of this partnership will be the integration of Kalray’s MPPA® processors into the NXP BlueBox®, an embedded autonomous driving platform. This iteration will address autonomous challenges in power and safety with Arm®-based technology and will be designed to support open standards.
“We are happy to partner with Kalray to take on the safe performance challenges of increasingly autonomous driving,” said Kamal Khouri, vice president & general manager, Advanced Driver Assistance, NXP. “Our platform offers the performance and functional safety needed for reliable autonomous driving as opposed to the risky and power-hungry consumer grade solutions that are currently being tested in vehicles.”
The strategic partnership between NXP and Kalray will bring multiple benefits to the development and industrialization of autonomous vehicles in areas such as safety, software, open standards support, performance per watt, architecture flexibility, and scalability. The new solution will offer sophisticated safety technologies in a “Safety Co-Pilot” configuration that leverages the strengths of each company. In addition, the modularity and scalability of the combined architecture will offer the partners a roadmap with flexible opportunities for rapidly scaling performance.
“We are pleased to announce this strategic partnership with NXP, the leading supplier of semiconductors to the automotive industry,” said Eric Baissus, CEO, Kalray. “Safety is unquestionably the single most pressing issue holding back the momentum of the autonomous vehicle movement globally, and we are confident that by leveraging the strengths of both companies we can overcome this critical industry challenge and provide a leading solution to the market.”
Edited by M. Hunt
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