Momentum - February 2021 - 13

Student Generation


Year 3 of the
Challenge was
held virtually.
Shown here are
members of
aUToronto giving
a presentation to
judges at the 2019

different from the two preceding years. While circumstances
forced the competition to move to a fully virtual delivery, the
eight universities remained steadfast in their goal of
developing an SAE Standard J3016 Level 4 autonomous
vehicle (AV) capable of navigating an urban driving course.
Following four rigorous days of competition, the University
of Toronto was crowned the AutoDrive Challenge Year 3
winner, amassing a total of 895 points out of a possible 1,000.
From September 28-October 1, 2020, teams presented virtually
to a panel of industry volunteers who scored the competition
based on a series of presentations, written reports, and a
dynamic validation of system testing.
" While this year's competition looked different than years
past, the level of creativity, ingenuity and innovation displayed
by participating teams remained impressive, " said Kevin
Dietrich, Program Leader for autonomous collegiate
competitions at General Motors. " Congratulations to all
participants on their fantastic work ethic and sense of purpose.
They should all be very proud of their work. "
The AutoDrive Challenge began in 2017, when GM provided
each of the eight participating university teams a brand-new
electric vehicle, a Chevrolet Bolt. The teams' task was to
convert the Bolt into an autonomous vehicle, meeting yearly
milestones along the way. The first competition was held in
2018. The Toronto team, called aUToronto, has won all three
annual competitions.
" All of us take pride in the work that we have done, " said


Jingxing " Joe " Qian, Team Lead for aUToronto. " The
competition results clearly reflect the high caliber and
dedication of the team. "
In the absence of a live event, the organizers used what are
known as " static event " scores, which are based on reports and
presentations that the teams submitted remotely. These
included an analysis of the social responsibility aspects of the
project, the overall conceptual design, and the results of a
number of sophisticated computer simulations.
Qian said that the latest iteration of the tam's car, Zeus,
includes a number of enhancements, including improvements
in perception, path planning, and GPS-free localization. To
make them, the aUToronto team overcame numerous
challenges, not the least of which was coordinating more than
50 team members who were working remotely on the project.
University of Toronto professor Tim Barfoot is co-advisor for
aUToronto. He also serves as Associate Director of the
University of Toronto Robotics Institute and the Chair of the
Robotics Option offered by the Division of Engineering
" Robotics is a very hands-on discipline, so experiences such
as the AutoDrive Challenge are needed to complement
classroom learning, " he said. " I am deeply grateful to SAE and
GM for organizing this activity and the Faculty of Applied
Science and Engineering for their ongoing support through the
Dean's Strategic Fund. I feel our graduates are better prepared
to head into the exciting field of autonomous vehicles than
perhaps anywhere in the world at this moment in time. The
fact that we won the competition is a bonus. " n

February 2021 13


Momentum - February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Momentum - February 2021

Momentum - February 2021 - Cover1
Momentum - February 2021 - Cover2
Momentum - February 2021 - 1
Momentum - February 2021 - 2
Momentum - February 2021 - 3
Momentum - February 2021 - 4
Momentum - February 2021 - 5
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