Self-Driving Car Simulators

Yesterday our VP of Engineering, Oliver Cameron, tweeted about our latest progress building out a self-driving car simulator.

https://twitter.com/olivercameron/status/761700019917377537

This is a project we started about a week ago, and it’s a lot of fun. We’re using the v-rep simulator package, because it comes with pre-built camera and radar objects that work nicely.

One of the surprises I encountered when we began working on this project was the lack of a standardized simulator platform in research or industry.

At Ford, we used a proprietary, in-house simulator.

In the public domain, there are a few simulator packages with moderate adoption, such as ROS and TORCS, but nothing that stands head and shoulders above the field.

There also exists the potential to build out a simulator using a game engine like Unreal, Unity, or Blender. But I worry we’ll spend too much time re-inventing the wheel if we go that way.

We’re taking a first pass with v-rep, and we’ll see how it goes, but if you’ve got a great solution for an automotive simulator, please let me know!

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