NI Tests the Computing Platform for Autonomous Vehicles

NI’s software-defined platform provides mixed signal functional test capabilities for testing the brain of an autonomous vehicle

AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#NIWeek–NI (Nasdaq: NATI), the provider of a software-defined platform that helps accelerate the development and performance of automated test and automated measurement systems, today announced a solution to test the computing platform for autonomous vehicles (AVs).

AVs are among the most complex systems being tested today. At the heart of the AV is a powerful computing platform that analyzes the environment around the vehicle and determines the appropriate action to help ensure the safety of the car and its surroundings.

As automotive companies design and build their own AV supercomputers that combine automotive-specific networks and sensors with consumer electronic components for this computing platform, a critical balance must be struck between high computing power and adequate efficiency. Validating this balance in the computing hardware requires a flexible test platform that can continually be adapted through software. By working with lead customers, NI has proven that it can meet the challenges of today and tomorrow with a single platform for testing automotive networks, digital protocols, sensor interfaces and power consumption capabilities. This test platform, scalable to production, is ideal to test the custom supercomputers that will enable the deployment of AVs. ​

“With over 40 years working with teams automating V&V test systems, NI is a trusted advisor for helping test engineering groups maximize test effectiveness, enabling them to release quality products efficiently and confidently,” said Chad Chesney, general manager and vice president, Transportation, NI.

NI’s solution for testing the complex computing platform consists of modular hardware with a configurable set of I/O that includes power measurements, thermal performance, automotive networks, sensor interfaces and PCB electrical measurements. The inherent flexibility in the modular design of NI’s solution means that automotive test teams can add measurement capabilities to the test system without buying a new system or starting from scratch. The footprint of the PXI-based system is also much smaller than that of a system composed of benchtop instruments. The holistic platform approach simplifies system complexity and reduces the burden on test teams to integrate disparate pieces of test equipment. ​

Learn more about the computing platform for autonomous vehicles

About NI

NI ( develops high-performance automated test and automated measurement systems to help you solve your engineering challenges now and into the future. Our open, software-defined platform uses modular hardware and an expansive ecosystem to help you turn powerful possibilities into real solutions.

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Amy Cearley

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