Autonomous vehicles (AVs), although taking off rather slowly compared to other emerging technologies, offers constant opportunities for partnering and developing various established aspects of autonomous driving applications. Case in point, Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology, along with radar, is a critical component, necessary in guiding and protecting the driverless vehicle.
Well known in Europe, Magneti Marelli is an international company founded in Italy in 1919. Based in Milan, Italy, the company focuses on the design and production of hi-tech systems and components for the automotive sector. These include powertrains, electronic systems, automotive lighting, suspension and exhaust systems, plastic components and modules, and aftermarket parts.
Recently, Magneti Marelli acquired a stake in LeddarTech Inc., a Canadian company known for a proprietary LiDAR technology for self-driving cars and driver assistance systems. The company’s specialty is solid-state LiDAR systems employing infrared light to monitor the area around the vehicle. For a brief review, LiDAR is a sensor technology based on laser light. In combination with cameras and radar, it enable autonomous driving levels 2 through 5, i.e., from partial to full driving automation, as defined by SAE International's standard.
Based on a technical and commercial cooperation agreement, the two companies will jointly develop complete LiDAR systems aimed at autonomous driving applications with further integration in automotive lighting products. Naturally they hope to supply these systems for car makers and OEMs worldwide. It will be interesting to see what they come up with. For further details, contact either or both companies.