Mercedes and Bosch reveal fully automated valet technology

24 July, 2017, 17:57 | Author: Pamela Mathis
  • Bosch supplies some of the tech Mercedes the trial cars

Called Automated Valet Parking, the system is now being trialled at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany, and was revealed in a YouTube video published on 24 July.

However, this joint demonstration will mark a milestone for truly autonomous vehicles because it eliminates human oversight from the equation. Parking, on the other hand, isn't most people's idea of fun. "The driverless parking solution at the Mercedes-Benz Museum demonstrates in impressive fashion just how far the technology has come", said Dr Michael Hafner, Head of Automated Driving and Active Safety at Mercedes-Benz Cars Development. The car's owners are seen parking on the ground floor of the auto park, then leaving the vehicle, tapping "Park" on a smartphone app, then leaving to go shopping.

For the public trials, users will need to reserve one of the test cars using a smartphone app. The vehicle rolls into a designated pick-up area after which it can be used for a journey.

The vehicle can autonomously also drive up to the pick-up area where a customer can use smartphones to ask for their auto.

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The system demonstrated here appears nearly identical to Audi's Piloted Parking, which was shown off back in 2013 with a driverless A7 saloon vehicle.

Driverless parking is made possible by an intelligent multi-storey auto park infrastructure from Bosch in conjunction with the vehicle technology from Mercedes-Benz.

You simply drive to a designated drop-off spot at the entrance of the auto park, hop out of your vehicle and then send it to an assigned parking space using a smartphone. The technology on board the auto performs safe driving manoeuvres in response to the commands from the auto park infrastructure and stops the vehicle in good time when necessary. The sensors for the multi-storey auto park infrastructure and the communications technology come from Bosch. Before the driverless customer service goes into operation at the beginning of 2018 - as the first such application worldwide - final approval will be required from the licensing authority. Bosch and Daimler note that it's possible to retrofit existing parking structures with similar tech, which could lead to up to 20 percent more efficiency in use of their available capacity. There are sensors both throughout the structure, and on the auto, providing info both about where vehicles are located and moving throughout the facility, as well as making it possible for the vehicle to sense and react to objects in its path, including pedestrians.

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