Robotic Racing – Winning the DARPA Grand Challenge November 19, 2006Posted by Unreasonable in Matters Technological.
In 2005 the Stanford AI Lab’s vehicle completed a 130 mile race thru the Mojave without a driver (or any other human intervention). In this 45 minute video Sebastian Thrun describes the technical challenges and the developments they used to overcome them.
The Stanford team won the $2,000,000 DARPA prize, which is a departure from DARPA’s previous mostly unsuccessful efforts to fund autonomous driving research. Instead of giving out grants, this time they provided no development funding, but offered a prize to the winner of the race.
It’s kind of ironic that they used a Volkswagon Toureg. Over the rear wheels it says “Drivers not required.”
For 2007 DARPA is sponsoring the Urban Grand Challenge, a similar race, but with traffic.
Also available online: Nova: The Great Robot Race