Report by Netease Auto on October 17 As is known to us, the entire automatic industry has the unprecedented pursuit of automatic drive technique. As a comprehensive server of geographical information that starts earlier in this field, NavInfo has its unique understanding of automatic drive and the supporting high-precision map.
Dr. Dai Donghai, senior deputy president of NavInfo reveals to Netease Auto that the technical reserves of NavInfo have been perfected; by 2020, it will realize mass production of automatic drive technique under multiple road conditions.Unique understanding of automatic drive: with the premise of mass production
As a comprehensive server of geographic information set up in 2002, NavInfo has no longer been limited to the business category of the map itself but expands its business field to the future fields in multiple aspects such as Internet of vehicles, automatic drive etc. And NavInfo’s understanding of the traditional map is finally targeted at the high-precision map orientation that serves the automatic drive technique.
Dr. Dai Donghai, senior deputy president of NavInfo reveals to Netease Auto that NavInfo started earlier in exploring automatic drive; early in 2012, it started its cooperation with the vehicle enterprises in Germany in terms of mass production: ‘since 2012, we have begun our cooperation with the vehicle manufacturers in terms of high-precision data, automatic drive service, automatic assistant drive and full-automatic drive. In the future several years, we also have a large mass production plan.
It can be seen that NavInfo’s understanding of automatic drive is still under the premise of mass production. Early in CES Asia held in Shanghai this year, I once had a dialogue with the senior managers of NavInfo. Jing Muhan, the then senior deputy president of NavInfo revealed that the supporting techniques should develop with the rhythm of car enterprises: ‘we do not care how others do. The development of our high-precision map is to satisfy the demands of the current vehicle factory. Our next step is to do semi-automatic, full-automatic and senior automatic drive. By the time when they (vehicle enterprises) possess the automatic drive, we will match them. It is not necessary to do it now.
That is to say that when vehicle enterprises reach whatever levels, the high-precision map provided by NavInfo will provide whatever levels. Its promotion planning of the high-precision map accords with the planning of the vehicle enterprises.
Dai Donghai reveals: ‘In the future, data collection relies on all the vehicles on the road. NavInfo attempts to create a closed loop with the vehicle enterprises. Both parties form a tight strategic partnership.’
According to the planning of NavInfo, it has supported the mass production ability of level2 (highway road conditions) in this June. In the mid term of the next year, it will promote the mass production degree of level 3 (interchange between highway and highway). By the beginning of 2019, it can provide the ability in main cities of level 4 (full automatic drive). By 2020, it can realize the full automatic drive under multiple road conditions.
Dai Donghai expresses that NavInfo has now basically possessed the ability that supports Level 4, ‘but the objective from data making to coverage ratio will be attained within the time that I just mentioned. In addition, the grades keep improving. The data collection mode and handling mode will also keep changing.’
So, to which levels does automatic drive develop in China?
In the global scope, German vehicle enterprises are the first one to study the automatic drive techniques. The second one is American and Japanese enterprises. But the Chinese enterprises studied the automatic drive technique relatively late.
But Dai Donghai has full confidence in the development of automatic drive techniques of Chinese enterprises. He expresses, ‘the domestic vehicle factories dare think and do. They may run faster.
Meanwhile, Dai Donghai also shows his concern about the development environment of automatic drive in China. He holds that the transportation conditions in China are more complicated than that of foreign countries, which also increases the difficulty for the automatic drive technique to be settled.
Dai Donghai reveals that the high-precision map applied to automatic drive should be of the centimeter level. But at present, our country’s standard for the map precision is of 5-20 meters, which cannot satisfy the demands of automatic drive automobile.
Dai Donghai expresses, ‘this is a great challenge for all the people and the national safety etc. Not only the transportation department, but also other departments are discussing with the national related functional departments about the possible influence and the solutions.’
In addition, Dai Donghai holds that the standards and norms of the automatic drive technique are not unified, which also restricts the development of technique to some degree, ‘In terms of aviation industry, people do not have much barrier when taking the plane. But when the vehicle truly reaches the degree of full automatic drive, the safety level should reach the same degree. But for this stipulation, all the countries are making laws. In face of the blankness of legislation, both domestic and foreign enterprises are discussing about it on this journey. Of course, we can learn from the standards in other industries.’
Actually, China adopts the supporting attitudes towards the automatic drive technique. It is said that the related standards of automatic drive are also being prepared. Meanwhile, it can be confirmed that the promotion of automatic drive technique requires the cooperation of enterprises and governments.
Dr. Dai Donghai holds that for the new industries like automatic drive, Chinese vehicle enterprises have great opportunities to make breakthroughs.