NEWS

UvA & TomTom Open New ICAI Lab

18 November 2019

University of Amsterdam and TomTom will be opening a new research lab for autonomous driving. The Atlas Lab will use AI for developing HD maps for self-driving vehicles.

Location technology specialist, TomTom, and the UvA, have announced the launch of a new public-private research lab. Atlas Lab will focus on using AI for developing advanced, highly accurate and safe high definition maps for self-driving vehicles. The lab is part of ICAI Amsterdam, the regional branch of the national Innovation Centre for AI, based in the Amsterdam Science Park.

In collaboration with TomTom, the UvA is embarking on research on the use of AI for creating HD maps suitable for all levels of autonomous driving. Theo Gevers, one of the Scientific Directors at Atlas Lab, comments: ‘At the UvA we are already doing research on automated recognition of items in images and videos. Yet the recognition of items and creation of HD maps in highly complex situations like a moving car, is still a huge challenge. This collaboration with TomTom provides an extra dimension to new and challenging AI-research.’

For the next five years, five PhD students will work in the Atlas lab on projects contributing to automated recognition of items like traffic signs, 3D-localization of vehicles and combining LIDAR (light detection and ranging) laser and camera images. For retrieving data, mobile mapping vans equipped with sensors, like LIDAR-systems and cameras, are being used.

‘TomTom is pushing the boundaries of the use of AI for making HD maps for self-driving cars,’ said Harold Goddijn, TomTom’s CEO. ‘We need groundbreaking research into AI technology, which is why we’re collaborating with UvA’s world-leading AI department on this initiative. This will move us a step closer to an autonomous future with safer roads, free of congestion and emissions.’