Self-driving cars are being taught to ‘see’ by firm to help improve driving in snowy weather

A TECH company has used advanced Lidar laser technology to help self-driving cars achieve clearer visibility while traveling in snow.

Many autonomous (driverless) vehicles on today’s roads analyze their surroundings with cameras that don’t work when covered in snow or other debris like rain and mud.

Sensor Cortrek’s user interface is delivered to drivers in the form of a dynamic display (pictured above)

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Sensor Cortrek’s user interface is delivered to drivers in the form of a dynamic display (pictured above)Credit: YouTube/Sensor Cortek

The tech company, Sensor Cortek, tests their self-driving solutions in the snow on a private 1,850-acre site in Ottawa, Canada, with a track stretching over nine miles, Canadian Manufacturing reports.

Sensor Cortek CEO Fahed Hassanat explained how his organization tests its technology, saying: “The badder [the snowstorm], the better.

“Nowadays you don’t get those heavy snowfalls as frequently as before, so whenever they happen, we just rush, rush, rush,” Ottawa Business Journal reports.

Sensor Cortek’s Lidar (laser imaging, detection, and ranging) tech emits beams that produce reflections.

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These reflections are captured to analyze the location of nearby objects in an area through digital clouds of points in 3D space.

The radar tech in Lidar also uses electromagnetic waves to capture additional information about surroundings.

Sensor Cortek mounts its high-definition sensor at the front of vehicles.

Data from this front calibrates and registers sensors throughout the system.

At the rear of a car equipped with Sensor Cortek is a computer that runs AI (artificial intelligence) algorithms and delivers detections to the tech’s presentation system.

Sensor Cortek’s progress could spell trouble for big-name competing manufacturers like Tesla, given that they rely on cameras to provide autonomous capabilities in programs like Full Self-Driving (FSD.)

Toni from Detroit Tesla put the company’s pricey FSD system to the test by activating the feature while driving in a couple of inches of snow.

Tesla says its Full Self-Driving (FSD) feature: “Identifies stop signs and traffic lights and automatically slows your car to a stop on approach, with your active supervision.”

FSD additionally provides automatic steering on city streets and highways.

Drivers that own a Tesla without FSD can purchase the software for $15,000.

After pulling his Tesla out of its parking area, Toni engaged FSD only to drift toward a curb moments later.

Toni added that the car was traveling far too fast for his liking and sliding during braking.

Sensor Cortrek’s ability to keep cars autonomous during snowstorms could force Tesla to re-evaluate its vehicles’ self-driving tech that’s heavily reliant on cameras

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Sensor Cortrek’s ability to keep cars autonomous during snowstorms could force Tesla to re-evaluate its vehicles’ self-driving tech that’s heavily reliant on camerasCredit: YouTube/Sensor Cortek
Sensor Cortek’s AI-driven solution would also help cars remain autonomous in muddy or rainy conditions

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Sensor Cortek’s AI-driven solution would also help cars remain autonomous in muddy or rainy conditionsCredit: YouTube/Sensor Cortek