Press Release

AVL Opens New Center for Mobility and Sensor Testing in Roding

Innovative Test Infrastructure for Driver Assistance Systems and Autonomous Driving

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With the new Mobility and Sensor Test Center, AVL opened a unique indoor laboratory for the verification and validation of sensors for driver assistance systems in Roding, Bavaria, on October 27, 2022. In the 1600 square meter test area, safety-relevant functions can be tested under adverse weather conditions, independent of real outdoor conditions, thus ensuring the safety of vehicles in semi-autonomous operation. During the opening ceremony, Prof. Helmut List, CEO of AVL List GmbH, and Dr. Georg Schwab, Managing Director of AVL Software and Functions GmbH, welcomed guests of honor from politics and industry.

 

Roding, Germany, October 27, 2022: The AVL Mobility and Sensor Test Center is one of the first industrial test centers for ADAS/AD systems in Bavaria and makes a decisive contribution to the safeguarding and validation of future automated vehicles.

To ensure even more safety on the roads in the future, it is crucial to have intelligent sensor technologies and their validation, since they must function safely in all weather conditions. Despite their proven relevance, adverse weather conditions such as rain, fog and dazzling backlighting are currently not considered in certification tests because their reproducibility and realistic replication outdoors is not possible.

With the new test center, AVL meets the industry's need for independently conducted sensor tests for automated vehicles. The tests are carried out in different weather and traffic conditions, such as heavy fog or rain. For precise validation, these tests also cover existing requirements for repeatability, traceability, and documentation.

On the 1600 square meter test area, a rain system was installed that can generate rain at an intensity of 5 mm/h up to 98 mm/h with a realistic droplet distribution and falling velocity. In the spirit of environmental protection, the water used in this process is recycled and reused. The lighting system provides a maximum illuminance of 2000 lux (10 cm above asphalt) derived from NCAP and a realistic replication of critical lighting conditions such as dusk and dawn. Additional adverse visibility conditions can be artificially produced by the fog system, which creates a visibility of < 10 m in the test hall.

Combining sensor testing with the development of software solutions from the fields of ADAS/AD and artificial intelligence, the competence center not only offers a standardized test field for advanced sensors, but also a pilot facility that is currently unique worldwide. Perfectly equipped technically, the indoor facility can also precisely represent country specific requirements, validate corresponding functions, and thus support derivative development.

Prof. Helmut List, CEO of AVL List GmbH: "Driver assistance systems are defining technological topics for the mobility of today and tomorrow. AVL has specifically invested in the new test center to provide our customers with state-of-the-art infrastructure that is unique in the world. This forms the basis for mastering the challenges of creating reliable solutions."

Dr. Georg Schwab, Managing Director of AVL Software and Functions GmbH, adds: "For the introduction and technical optimization of autonomous systems, it is essential to reproducibly test them under different environmental conditions. These tests must be carried out in an efficient manner and combined with innovative simulation methods. Both will be available in the future at AVL in Roding."

Guest of honor Bavarian State Minister of Finance and Regional Identity, Albert Füracker, in his speech: “Bavaria is a true ‘Car State’! The automotive industry has always been deeply rooted within Bavaria and has evolved into one of the key driving forces of our worldwide economic success. This is why we are investing over 18 million € in the future of this industry and the digital site development here in Roding! With its highly innovative digitalization and research projects, AVL is a pioneer of autonomous driving. The new center for mobility and sensor testing brings additional knowledge and expertise to the traditional automotive location Roding.”

AVL Mobility and Sensor Test Center Facts

  • The first indoor test center in Germany for ADAS/AD sensor validation in adverse weather conditions
  • 1,600 m² testing area incl. 1,000 m² of rainfall and fog facility
  • Indoor asphalt street with variable design of road boundary lines and road layout
  • Integrated control station for end-to-end monitoring and parameter documentation
  • Realistic rain intensity, drop size distribution and falling velocity
  • Simulation of critical light conditions like dusk and dawn
  • Virtual sensor model validation with “Digital Twin“ of the sensor hall
  • Sensor calibration testbed
  • Test hall offers space for passenger cars and commercial vehicles
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