Issue 41 Unmanned Systems Technology December/January 2022 PteroDynamics X-P4 l Sense & avoid l 4Front Robotics Cricket l Autonomous transport l NWFC-1500 fuel cell l DroneX report l OceanScout I Composites I DSEI 2021 report

6 Mission-critical info for UST professionals Platform one A new control architecture for driverless cars is being tested in Milton Keynes in the UK (writes Nick Flaherty). The project, by Fetch Mobility, uses remote drivers to deliver a vehicle to a user when summoned via an app. The user can drive the vehicle normally, whether it’s a two-seater or a petrol-driven family saloon, and leave it at their destination. The service then takes over the vehicle remotely and drives it back to a central point. This dramatically simplifies the technology required in the vehicle, as it avoids the need for multiple cameras, Lidar or radar sensors and complex machine learning systems. Instead, the vehicle needs to have remote control of the throttle and steering via a CAN bus, which is coupled with a camera feed and a wireless link over a 5G cellular network. Using 5G provides the low latency required to drive the vehicle remotely. The technology for the remote driving is supplied by start-up Imperium Drive, which has developed three key technologies for 5G links. The first is an AI-based link prediction algorithm that predicts the end-to-end network behaviour using all available parameters from cellular networks with more than 95% accuracy. These predictions enable safe teleoperation by enabling in-time adaptation of the streaming and control systems, allowing robust and safe teleoperation in uncontrolled environments. The second is a proprietary streaming engine that adapts to variations in the performance of the cellular network to provide timely transmission of the most critical information from the vehicle. This ensures that information about the driving environment such as lane boundaries or nearby pedestrians is transmitted reliably to the remote operator. Imperium has also developed an active safety system that uses the link-aware control algorithms to ensure safe and smooth vehicle operation by ‘listening’ to the network prediction and streaming engine. This controller handles extreme network conditions such as a sudden loss of signal or highly unstable links by executing safety manoeuvres that ensure vehicle safety at all times. For fleet operators in the car-sharing and short-term rental sector, remote driving technology can significantly increase the revenue from each car. They can relocate cars more quickly at periods of high demand, which is key to maximising usage. The fleet in Milton Keynes is currently operating on private routes before the service is extended in the next 12 months to include public roads. Fetch Mobility aims to launch a fully operational remote- operated car-hailing service in the UK in the second half of 2022. Driverless cars Remote twist to car hire December/January 2022 | Unmanned Systems Technology A remote operator delivers the cars to customers and drives them back to a central point after use