SEOUL -- Nexen Tire, a major tire maker in South Korea, has partnered with Hyundai Motor and a university research team to develop road surface detection technology using artificial intelligence and big data of noises on various types of roads. The technology will be used for autonomous vehicles to analyze the road surface and optimize its braking distance.
The braking distance of a car is affected by the types of roads and the condition of car tires. Based on experience and intuition, drivers feel vibration and noise to control the speed so that the car can come to a full stop with a minimum braking distance. However, self-driving cars cannot differentiate the noise of a car running on a dry asphalt road or a muddy trail. Some autonomous cars use special cameras to detect the road surface but it is mainly for the control of the suspension system to optimize the rolling and yawing motion in real-time.
Nexen Tire collaborated with Hyundai and Inha University to develop the AI and big data-based road surface detection technology using some 300,000 sets of tire noise data collected through about 250 on-road tests. A system can detect the kinds of roads a car is traveling on and the tire read wear level. Autonomous vehicles will be able to optimize their vehicle control ability by analyzing the road's surface and the friction characteristics of tires.
"This technology can help increase customers' convenience and safety by providing the optimized driving environment through surface detection and tread wear calculation," an unnamed Nexen spokesperson said in a statement on December 5.
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