Thursday, October 8, 2015

CMU and Boeing Establish Aerospace Data Analytics Lab

The goal, say Carnegie Mellon University and Boeing, is to find ways to use artificial intelligence and big data to capitalize on the enormous amount of data generated in the design, construction and operation of modern aircraft. Creating a maintenance schedule determined by the actual flight history and component performance for each airplane, rather than historic norms for similar aircraft, is just one of the possibilities. Ted Colbert, Boeing’s chief information officer, described the lab as a unique aerospace partnership which will address the company’s evolving business needs. “We’re aiming to push the technology envelope,” Colbert said. “We have the best and the brightest faculty at a leading institution focused on how we can innovate and solve business challenges for today and into the future.”

$11M gift from Hillman to help CMU attract faculty, support students

The university has raised more than $20 million for the chair between Hillman's gift and contributions from other area philanthropies and plans to continue fundraising with a goal of funding the endowment at $30 million, a university spokesman said...
...In 2014, he gave CMU $5 million to support the BrainHub research initiative, and $2.75 million in 2014 to support Traffic21 and Metro21.

Volvo will accept liability for self-driving car crashes

Questions over legal liability of accidents and the changing role of car insurance for motorists in a driverless-car era have been asked since engineers first plucked the idea of autonomous vehicles from the pages of science fiction and started turning them into reality. But despite the question being posed throughout the auto industry, few have had an answer. Volvo's pledge marks the first concrete step toward one. While the carmaker only represents a small fraction of the U.S. market this move is also a smart business decision, giving Volvo an edge over automakers who don't offer a similar liability shield to customers.

ITS World Congress discusses mobility, EVs, automation

Discussions at this week's ITS World Congress focused on the future of the automotive industry, including the development of electric and autonomous vehicles, as well as the shift from selling car ownership to promoting the car experience. Keynote speaker Brigitte Courtehoux of Peugeot Citroen predicted that car companies would, in the future, be "mobility service providers."

French firm debuts driverless shuttle in Calif. office park

France's EasyMile said it is partnering with the GoMentum Station autonomous vehicle testing facility, which will allow it to run a pilot project offering driverless shuttle service in a San Ramon, Calif., office park next year. EasyMile has launched similar projects in France, Finland, Spain, Italy and Switzerland.

Mercedes-Benz F015 Prototype Can Be Controlled With A Smartphone App

Mercedes-Benz has introduced a prototype driverless car that can be controlled via a smartphone application or via a button-free dashboard that responds to hand gestures and eye movements. The German automaker demonstrated the breakthrough on a pre-programmed course on CBS' "60 Minutes" on Sunday but said such a car would not be introduced until the distant future.

Google Street View Cars To Measure And Map Urban Air Quality

Google has teamed up with environmental sensor company Aclima to add sensors to its Street View cars in California in order to measure and map air quality in three cities. "We have a profound opportunity to understand how cities live and breathe in an entirely new way by integrating Aclima's mobile sensing platform with Google Maps and Street View cars," said Aclima's Davida Herzl.

NOCoE and NACTO discuss Traffic Incident Management in Seattle

National Operations Center of Excellence is holding a webinar on Traffic Incident Management in conjunction with the National Association of City Transportation Officials on Oct. 21 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00p.m. The webinar will focus on the city of Seattle, which lacked standard protocols in planning for and responding to major traffic incidents on its roadway network prior to a crash in March 2015 that effectively paralyzed the city during the evening rush hour. This webinar will tell the story of what went wrong, and how Seattle brought in a team of consultants and nationwide experts in the field to help them improve its Traffic Incident Management program. 

Uber and Lyft face a new challenger in Boston

The startup, Fasten, raised nearly just over $9 million in the spring, and quietly began operating in Boston last month, according to the Boston Herald. Fasten’s service is identical to Uber’s low-cost UberX service, which employs regular folks to ferry passengers in their own cars, except for a couple of important details. Instead of taking a percentage cut, say 20% to 30%, from each ride, it only takes $1 per ride (or a fixed daily or weekly fee, according to Fasten’s website). “People will still love Uber, people will still love Lyft, but there is room for us as well,” co-founder and CEO Kirill Evdakov told the Boston Herald. “It’s not a zero-sum game, it’s not a winner-takes-all game.”

5 Takeaways from the Largest Electric Vehicle Study to Date

We still have plenty to learn about electric vehicles and how Americans use them since the earliest adopters went green. From the start of 2011 to the beginning of 2014, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory installed over 17,000 level 2 EV charging stations around the country and tracked the charging habits of over 8,000 plug-in hybrid and all-electric car drivers to assess the state of things. The study was the largest on EV infrastructure to date.