Nvidia’s New Supercomputer Will Enable Level 5 Autonomous Driving
Nvidia has finished development of a new supercomputer, which is capable of driving with no human intervention.
Nvidia is considered one of the world’s leaders in computers and artificial intelligence for autonomous driving. The company’s Drive PX 2 computing platform is capable of 30 trillion operations per second and is utilized in Tesla’s vehicles, which are supposed to eventually drive themselves. Though Nvidia and Tesla both claim that the Drive PX 2 computer is capable of Level 5 autonomy (cars without steering wheels, pedals, or mirrors), the tech supplier has upped its game considerably.
Nvidia just announced the Drive PX Pegasus at a GPU Technology Conference in Munich. It has the capability to process a whopping 320 trillion operations per second. This is more than ten times as powerful as the computer that the company said can already handle full self-driving capability. The chip giant’s director of automotive tech, Danny Shapiro, told reporters:
“After the first generation platform, we realized we needed a lot more performance. This is a true supercomputer for the car.”
The platform — which will go into production during the second half of 2018 — is the size of a license plate and can process huge amounts of data instantaneously through the use of lidar, radar, ultrasonic sensors, and cameras.
The chipmaker says it handles up to one terabyte of data per second, which is comparable to a 100-server data center. It will become the primary system that Nvidia recommends to companies developing self-driving vehicles. Once it becomes available, companies that are currently using Drive PX 2 will be able to upgrade to Pegasus. Shapiro continued:
“This system is going to save thousands of watts off of what is in these cars today.”
The chipmaker also added that 225 companies are already using the Drive PX customizable platform. Of these, 25 are working on driverless taxis. Some suppliers and startups mentioned are NuTonomy, Zoox, and Optimus Ride. NuTonomy CEO, Karl Iagnemma, shared:
“NuTonomy is building for Level 5 and Pegasus is the kind of platform that will be required to support these types of systems.”