Self-Driving

Ford celebrates how math is impacting the future of autonomous technology on Pi Day

One Ford executive is celebrating Pi Day by reminding people that math is a big part of the reason their vehicle exists.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

The long road to autonomous vehicles is built on the backbone of mathematics. This Pi Day, John Rich, Chief Operating Officer, Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC has written a post on Medium celebrating the influence his father had on him falling in love with math, technology, and the pursuit of transportation solutions of the future.

Rich says that he sees Pi Day, "as an opportunity to appreciate the people who helped me understand and get excited about numbers and formulas." He cites his father as his main source of inspiration saying that he "learned to appreciate the importance of mathematics from him."

Rich goes on to describe how his father fanned the flames for his passion:

"My dad would take me to observatories and explain in incredible detail how telescopes worked, what we were looking at when we saw stars in the sky and how far away other planets were. Without realizing it, these conversations were capturing my imagination and steering me down a career path heavily reliant on math."

Cars work because of math, Rich tells readers. It's as simple as how a door opens and closes to as complex as inventing the next steps of automation on the path to self-driving cars. Programming the computers to analyze vehicle surroundings and make precise decisions requires complex algorithms, the products data injected by the cameras, LiDAR, and radar units on self-driving vehicles.

Rich urges readers to take a moment on Pi Day to, "think about and thank that person in your life who helped you understand algebra, translate trigonometry or decode calculus."

Trending News

 
 

New Amazon Fire TV for Auto technology is debuting in the Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer.

Photo courtesy of Stellantis

The Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer are set to be unveiled soon. Ahead of those debuts, Jeep has announced that those vehicles will be the first in the industry to integrate Amazon Fire TV for Auto.

Amazon Fire TV for Auto will give Wagoneer family occupants access to their favorite shows, movies, apps, unique vehicle features, and Alexa. It will communicate directly with the SUV's Uconnect 5 infotainment operating system. Just like in other Amazon devices, content syncs with an existing Amazon account. This means that customers will be able to pause a show in their home and seamlessly continue watching once they get into their vehicle.

"The all-new 2022 model-year Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer are designed and engineered to set a new standard for American premium in the large SUV segment," said Christian Meunier, JeepĀ® Brand Chief Executive Officer - Stellantis. "Launching Fire TV for Auto as an industry-first technology to the Wagoneer lineup illustrates one of the many ways we intend to deliver class-leading technology and connectivity to our customers."

Amazon The screen for Amazon Fire TV for Auto looks very similar to what you'd see on a TV at your home.Photo courtesy of Stellantis

Amazon

Fire TV for Auto builds on the Fire TV experience that exists today with unique features that include:

  • Passengers can view Fire TV in high definition from the rear seats and the front passenger screen (a privacy filter disables driver viewing). When the vehicle is in park, the driver also can view Fire TV on the main Uconnect 5 screen
  • Touchscreen controls and support for compatible content can be downloaded on trips where wireless service is limited or to save on data
  • A Fire TV for Auto-specific remote provides control of the experience and includes push-to-talk access to Alexa, making it easy to find and quickly play shows
  • The remote includes a button that connects Fire TV with the new Uconnect 5 system for control of vehicle features, such as climate, maps and more

"We reimagined Fire TV for the automobile with a purpose-built experience that delivers the best in entertainment, anywhere you go," said Sandeep Gupta, Vice President and General Manager of Amazon Fire TV. "With Fire TV built in, customers can stream their favorite shows, see if they left the lights on at home with Alexa, and take advantage of unique controls through the Uconnect system."

Fire TV for Auto will be packaged with other connected services and made available in fall 2021 in Canada, Mexico and the United States.

This isn't the first time a Stellantis company has been on the cutting edge of in-vehicle tech. Jeep's stablemate, Ram, was the first to integrate SiriusXM 360L into a vehicle, its 2019 Ram 1500.

Trending News

 
 

The McLaren Artura is a new hybrid supercar.

Photo courtesy of McLaren

The McLaren Artura is the company's first series-production high-performance hybrid supercar and, like everything else McLaren does, they're not letting the natural forces of the Earth get into the way of a good time behind the wheel.

It's more than just a modern car. The Arturo is a way forward for McLaren. It's built on the McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture, a new platform that allows for engaging drive dynamics and a hybrid powertrain.

The car is designed to have a low-nose, cab-forward, high-tail stance. It has dihedral doors, a short wheelbase, and low stance. McLaren describes the car as looking "almost 'shrink-wrapped''.

Mclaren Artura The Artura is ready for the track or street.Photo courtesy of McLaren

Mclaren Artura

The Artura's powertrain features a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that is paired with an electric motor and 7.4-kilowatt-hour battery pack. The power supply produces 671 brake horsepower and 531 pound-feet of torque. Up to 166 pound-feet of torque is available instantaneously, at the push of a throttle. That gets the car from zero to 60 mph in 3.0 seconds, zero to 124 mph in 8.3 seconds, and zero to 186 mph in 21.5 seconds.

The Artura's lithium-ion battery consists of five modules that are refrigerant called using cooling rails. The assembly is bolted onto the rear base of the monocoque. The car delivers 19 miles of all-electric range.

Owners charge the vehicle via a plug-in hybrid power outlet. It can be charged to an 80 percent level in just 2.5 hours with a standard cable. Batteries can harvest power from the V6 while the car is operational. That harvesting is tailored depending on the drive mode selected.

An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard. It pairs with McLaren's first electronic differential. It has an upgraded electro-hydraulic steering and Proactive Damping Control, which are deigned to enhance agility, stability, and dynamic performance.

McLaren Artura

Photo courtesy of McLaren

The total weight of all hybrid components is 287 pounds (194-pound battery pack and a 34-pound electric motor). The car has a dry weight of 3,075 and a wet weight of 3,303 pounds. That all-in weight is on-par with other supercars that aren't hybrids.

Four Powertrain models, including an E-mode for all-electric driving, Comfort mode for range and efficiency, Sport for more aggressive driving, and Track for premium performance. Separate handling mode choices adjust damper firmness and the degree of Electronic Stability Control intervention to suit driver preference and weather and road conditions. Drivers can choose Powertrain and Handling modes via a steering wheel control without their hands leaving the wheel.

The car's wheels are wrapped in next-gen Pirelli P Zero Corsa tires. The Cyber Tires generate real-time data and relay it to the car's stability control systems to optimize tire performance.

The interior sports standard power-adjustable seats and Homelink. Vehicle nose lift, power folding mirrors, carbon ceramic brakes, and soft close doors are also standard.

U.S. customers get standard power-adjustable heated Comfort Seats with memory. They can upgrade to new Clubsport seats that deliver the support of a bucket seat with a moveable backrest. The car's structure means that a 97.5th percentile (6ft 4in) driver can fit behind the wheel.

There are three further core specifications: Performance, which has a sporting, functional aesthetic; TechLux, where the focus is on the technical luxury that the name suggests; and Vision, which displays a more avant-garde and adventurous look and feel.

McLaren presents the Artura with a completely new interior featuring control buttons on the steering wheel, a new 8-inch high-definition infotainment touch screen, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. Two high-definition screens include an interface that is built on all-new software. A stealth mode on the main binnacle hides non-essential content on the screens.

The vehicle is capable of over-the-air updates.

McLaren is equipping the car with a number of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, auto high-beam assist, and road sign recognition.

McLaren backs the Artura with a five-year new vehicle warranty, six-year battery warranty, and 10-year body warranty.

The McLaren Artura is priced to start at $225,000. The first deliveries of the car will commence in the third quarter of 2021.

Trending News