Momentum - April 2019 - 17



Image credit: city of Pittsburgh

Among other things, Anderson continued, "this
technology features seamless redundancy that allows us
to synchronize at microsecond-level precision-across
many sensors all throughout the system over ethernet-
how all of those sensors are moving. We've developed a
standard automotive connector; we've worked with our
partners to get that in place so they actually have it in
their libraries and so when we integrate our system into
their vehicles, that integration goes smoothly. We work
with our partners to develop some of the interfaces to
the system. These are all foundational enablers."
Anderson contrasted Aurora's approach to technology
development with other companies that take what he
described as a "ladder to the moon" approach by publicly
demonstrating technologies with a particular car company before they are quite ready for commercialization,
fixing problems rung by rung as they arise. So while
many companies get headlines for their demos and
appear to be at the vanguard, he said, Aurora has elected
to forge on largely under the radar.
Said Anderson: "We could have moved faster...we
could have said, don't waste your time with multiple
partners, don't waste your time building out a common
periphery of products, don't waste your time attempting
to pull together this ecosystem around the Aurora driver.
But our focus here with the engineering team is put your
head down, work on the problem that we know we have
to solve, focus on the foundational infrastructure for that
problem, and when we get there, we will look like we
were slower early on. That's fine. Be OK with being on
the correct S curve if it means we asymptote at a much
higher place, because ultimately that line, in terms of
the performance required to safely deploy self-driving
technology, is very high. We fundamentally believe
that...we've tried to lay that foundation, to build that
infrastructure-to fuel, if you will, the rocket that will get
us to the moon instead of the ladder that ultimately will
not practically make it."
In her presentation, the city of Pittsburgh's Ricks said
it's important to identify what problem autonomous
vehicle technology is aiming to solve. One of the
important questions to ask in that identification is: "What



Karina Ricks, Director of
Pittsburgh's Department of
Mobility and Infrastructure,
said it's important to clearly
identify the problem that is to
be solved with autonomous
technology. For the 'Burgh, it's
providing greater economic
and social mobility for

is the correct regulatory framework, knowing that we're very early on in
the innovation curve? We don't want to clamp down on innovation, we
don't want to manage and govern things that are just really not even
real at this point, but how do we properly regulate to preserve safety
and still encourage innovation?"
In contrast to certain other places around the world, "I think we in the
U.S. exercise a healthy degree of skepticism" about new technologies,
"and perhaps that slows the rate of adoption quite a bit," she said.
Noting that she is not a Pittsburgh native, she said the city has a
"high tolerance for getting to that next place" in terms of technology
development. "I don't think people lose their minds here. It's not 'feel
free to experiment on us.' There's a tolerance to safely test, safely
innovate here, and learn from it and iterate and improve. Coming
from Washington, DC, I can unequivocally state, the population in
Washington, DC, is less tolerant of that."
One of Ricks' priorities is to get the public engaged in the
development of public policy for autonomous vehicles and to enable
the public to have a voice in guiding industry as to how the technology
will be deployed. She noted that for Pittsburgh, a priority is ensuring
that autonomous vehicle technology is used to ensure economic
opportunity for all.
"Turns out your ability to move freely is the number one factor in
your ability to change your economic status," she said. "That's what
my department is focused on, that is the core mission: to provide the
physical mobility necessary for the economic and social mobility that
people are seeking in Pittsburgh."
PAVE's Tara Andringer said the organization sees three significant
hurdles to be overcome if automated vehicle technology is to become
a reality. One is the technology itself, another is regulation. "But where
PAVE lives is in the third piece: public acceptance. We're more likely
to overcome these first two hurdles if the public is on board and
understands the technology and understands the societal impacts."
She noted that SAE International is a founding member of PAVE,
adding, "We believe part of this educational process is giving people a
vocabulary to have the conversation."
Delivering welcome remarks was SAE International President Paul
Mascarenas. "What we hope to achieve tonight is bring you all together,
whether you are entrepreneurs, or academia, or regulators-you're all
thought leaders, and you all are part of this transition that the industry
is going through right now," he said.

By Patrick Ponticel, MOMENTUM editor

April 2019 17


Momentum - April 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Momentum - April 2019

Momentum - April 2019
Reliability overhaul: a lesson in resilience
Turbulence on the track
Full circle
Lap simulation tool shows the way
Baja SAE technical inspection
VW’s MEB platform: a modularity enabler
The F-22 Raptor gets its first metallic 3D-printed part
SAE 101: WCX 2019
Moon shot as metaphor for autonomous vehicle technology
DOSSIER: Greg Sawvelle
Momentum - April 2019 - Momentum - April 2019
Momentum - April 2019 - Cover2
Momentum - April 2019 - Contents
Momentum - April 2019 - A better MOMENTUM
Momentum - April 2019 - Briefs
Momentum - April 2019 - Reliability overhaul: a lesson in resilience
Momentum - April 2019 - 5
Momentum - April 2019 - Turbulence on the track
Momentum - April 2019 - 7
Momentum - April 2019 - Full circle
Momentum - April 2019 - 9
Momentum - April 2019 - Lap simulation tool shows the way
Momentum - April 2019 - 11
Momentum - April 2019 - Baja SAE technical inspection
Momentum - April 2019 - VW’s MEB platform: a modularity enabler
Momentum - April 2019 - The F-22 Raptor gets its first metallic 3D-printed part
Momentum - April 2019 - SAE 101: WCX 2019
Momentum - April 2019 - Moon shot as metaphor for autonomous vehicle technology
Momentum - April 2019 - 17
Momentum - April 2019 - DOSSIER: Greg Sawvelle
Momentum - April 2019 - 19
Momentum - April 2019 - 20
Momentum - April 2019 - Cover3
Momentum - April 2019 - Cover4