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TalTech and Florida Poly launch partnership to research autonomous vehicles


Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech) signed a co-operation agreement with Florida Polytechnic University (Florida Poly) on 10 April to join forces for future development and increasing security of automated vehicles.

Self-driving cars and other autonomous systems are one of the most paradigm-changing technological developments in today's world. Transportation is affecting every single person and has a huge impact on economic development. There are a lot of challenges to solve and international cooperation is crucial here.

The Self-driving Vehicles and Autonomous Systems research group of Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech), in Estonia, led by the Dr. Raivo Sell, has demonstrated its high-level competence and capability to design and develop an AV shuttle from scratch. So far the main focus has been on vehicle development and the next step is to integrate AVs to real traffic situations but in a safe way.

The Advanced Mobility Institute of Florida Polytechnic University (Florida Poly) in the US, led by Dr. Rahul Razdan, is a leading institute focused on the testing and verification of autonomous vehicles. Florida Poly AMI has developed unique verification and scenario simulation tools to analyze and identify edge cases in terms of safety and accident analysis. They are working towards the Transportation Operating System concept which will change the whole paradigm how transportation is handled and coordinated on cloud-based solutions.

Both universities have strong research groups working on self-driving cars at a higher level.

The research collaboration will use Florida Poly’s unique capability in testing to improve the robustness of TalTech automated vehicle system. In the process, Florida Poly’s tools and methodologies will be tested in realistic environments provided by TalTech.

The cooperation agreement was signed in the Estonian Embassy in Washington where a roundtable seminar was organized just after the signing process. There were participants from Washington, D.C., Georgetown Public Affairs, EU delegation of Transport and Economic Development, etc. Ambassador of Estonia to the United States Jonatan Vseviov pointed out that transatlantic cooperation between Estonia and US is crucial to pursue innovation and demonstrate new transportation solutions to the public.

Before the event, the TalTech team participated in the Future Technology Summit in Washington. D.C., where the small scale model of ISEAUTO got a lot of attention. The project manager of ISEAUTO Dr. Raivo Sell spoke in the panel session on a future perspective on connected technology, policy-making, and infrastructure development.

Several new initiatives were started in this summit, and the most solid cooperation plan was agreed with Mr. Shaji Nair, founder and CEO of Future of Technology Summit.

We are looking forward to cooperation to bring ISEAUTO research results to Washington, D.C., and to Malaysia.

The cooperation has been made possible by the Baltic-American Freedom Foundation grant financing TalTech researchers visit to and network building with the U.S.

This release was first published 22 April 2019 by TalTech.

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