The Automated Valet Parking joint project was implemented in collaboration with leading car manufacturers and technology suppliers. BMW, Ford, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar Land Rover and VW Group’s technology company Cariad were involved, as well as technology suppliers Bosch, Valeo and Continental / Copernicus in addition to Unikie.
MULTIPLE CAR BRANDS, SEVERAL SYSTEMS
The Automated Valet Parking joint project developed the interoperability of the environments of six different car brands and four technology suppliers. In addition, the project promoted the implementation of the ISO standard related to remote control and autonomous driving of cars.
Building the interoperability of the environments of several car brands as well as technology suppliers was a challenging project. It challenged not only all technology suppliers, but also automakers, as each operates in its own tightly protected application, device and operating environment to ensure a critical safety aspect.
Fast problem-solving capability with the new operating model
An intelligent system utilizing data and machine learning was developed during the project to work with technology and technology interfaces developed by leading car manufacturers for their vehicles. The simultaneous development of four technology suppliers with automakers from their own technology environments posed challenges for each of their own development work. Corrections and changes made to one system could cause error situations in the systems of others. In addition, each car manufacturer’s car model had its own challenges and features that required a case-by-case response. The Unikie team was involved in resolving error and problem situations detected by automakers and other technology vendors in their own systems. Despite schedule pressures, Unikie’s technology team was able to solve problems flexibly and quickly across company boundaries.
With its travel restrictions, Covid-19 posed a big challenge to Unikie’s technology team, which operates from several different locations not only within Finland, but also in Germany and Poland. The solution was Unikie’s autonomous driving development, testing and demonstration space. A development environment was created there, where the development of the Unikie system and the environment installed in the Munich parking garage in Germany was possible from many different locations. The parking garage space was equipped with numerous surveillance cameras to allow remote teams to see the cars ’response to changes in systems and applications. In this way, we were able to develop the environment and technology with a large number of experts.
Mobility becomes an experience, safety is improved and time is saved
The Automated Valet Parking Show, the result of the joint project, was presented at the world premiere at IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich in September. In the AVP system, cars from six different automakers were driven under the system in four parallel but compatible environments to the desired locations and functions.
Unikie’s Valet Parking solution creates a completely new kind of automated experience compared to the traditional valet parking service. With our solution, car manufacturers and parking companies can offer their customers new value-added services and significant time savings. Automating parking area or garage traffic reduces risks of accidents and offers possibilities for new automated services such as:
- Automated charging of EVs on demand (the charged vehicle can be moved from the charging bay to a new spot freeing the bay for other vehicles)
- Automated car wash service
- Quick car drop-off and pick-up
- Fast online vehicle software updates
- Automated winter/summer tyre changes
See the TEASER FOR OUR AUTOMATED VALET PARKING SHOWCASE
Unikie's technology has numerous use cases
The potential of the new technology was to be presented to consumers as concretely as possible, and therefore the environment created in Munich was implemented using the Automated Valet Parking model. However, it will be some time before cars move on public roads with technology at the production level that allows automatic remote control via the environment. However, the technology is already available for production in many different applications, such as:
- Transfer of new cars at the car factory from the production line to the test areas, performing the tests and transferring the car for transport.
- Remote control of various logistics centers and vehicles moving in them using the system.
- Automation of bus depot maintenance operations – electric buses can be driven to charging points and other service points autonomously.
- Mining machines, combine harvesters, tractors and other machines operating in a limited area can be driven autonomously by an external system.
The introduction of technology, for example, as part of the logistics of car factories, will make automatic remote parking possible in the near future. In 2020 alone, nearly 80 million new cars were produced worldwide. The faster car manufacturers adopt the technology in their own factories, the faster Automated Valet Parking services will become more widespread.