Meridian, the organisation co-created by government and the tech industry to oversee the implementation of testing and development of self-driving vehicles, says Britain is at the forefront of autonomous vehicle development after details were shared of a £12 million funding pot to share between businesses.
Committed funding plans for industry innovation
It is hoped that the funds – secured by the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) and supported by Meridian – will drive innovation for autonomous vehicle technology in the industry. The funding was allocated on a competition basis to six successful consortia.
A range of business, from small specialist start-ups through to globally recognised vehicle manufacturers such as Jaguar-Land Rover, were among those to be selected to receive funds for investment opportunities in the connected autonomous vehicle (CAV) sector. Competitive bids drew international attention as British businesses will work with some tech companies from abroad, including aiPod, a US-based start-up that will lead a consortium of five to develop edge case scenarios to virtually validate CAV decision-making processes and eliminate risk.
UK as an autonomous vehicle development hub
Thanks to this investment with government funding, the UK is on its way to becoming a hub for autonomous vehicle development. Unlike any other country, the UK is able to offer prospective engineers business facilities from concept to development within a two-hour radius, as so many CAV businesses are based between London and the Midlands. The extensive ecosystem network has a keen focus on safety and incorporates both virtual and real scenarios in the autonomous testing chain.