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LeddarTech and COAST Autonomous Interview

Joint Featured Speaker Interview

Pierre Oliver, Chief Technology Officer of LeddarTech


Pierre Lefèvre, Chief Technical Officer of COAST Autonomous

Can you share with us how the relationship between LeddarTech® and COAST Autonomous came to be? Can you offer some insight into your future?

Discussions started around Coast Autonomous’ perception platform and their needs for highly reliable sensing technologies. As one of the leaders in autonomous shuttles, COAST has consistently been innovating to increase the level of safety for their passengers and LiDAR plays a crucial role in that evolution. COAST first adopted the M16 2D LiDAR solution for their shuttles to improve detection capabiliti s of objects, obstacles, and people within the immediate vicinity of the vehicle.

LeddarTech's® reputation was forged on offering best-in-class Solid-State LiDARs based on flash illumination, which is perfectly suited for these types of mobility applications.

After assessing the quality and reliability of the Leddar M16 sensor, COAST Autonomous decided to integrate the LeddarTech’s® 3D Flash solid-state LiDAR to create an even greater 360-degree detection cocoon for its shuttles for collision avoidance, effectively eliminating any blind spots while the vehicle is in motion.

This 3D Flash solid-state LiDAR module is named the Leddar® Pixell and was only recently released by LeddarTech®. COAST Autonomous is among the very first customers to gain access to this technology.

How has collaboration helped LeddarTech® and COAST Autonomous achieve their recent innovations?

Engaging in open discussions regarding each companies’ respective goals, COAST Autonomous clearly defined its needs for more reliable sensing technologies to address their desire to deploy their autonomous vehicles in various environments. LeddarTech® is a strong believer in the importance of the voice of the customer to help lead our innovation.

What do you hope delegates will take away from your presentation?

Implementing highly reliable detection cocoons on autonomous shuttles contributes to accelerating the deployment of such innovative mobility solutions in our cities and neighborhoods. By enabling superior and dependable detection of pedestrians, cyclists and other obstacles in the vehicle’s surroundings without any dead zones or blind spots, the 3D Flash Leddar® Pixell uniquely answers the pressing market requirements when deploying autonomous vehicles that can tackle complex and unpredictable urban environments.  LiDAR technology continues to pave the way towards the mass adoption of ADAS and AV.

How are conferences like Image Sensors Auto Americas important to the advancement of Lidar technology?

LiDAR technology is still a relatively new technology and Image Sensors Auto Americas allows representatives from the automotive and mobility industry to discover the intrinsic value of LiDAR as a crucial technology alongside radar and camera in the advancement of autonomous driving. By bringing together professionals from all levels of the automotive value chain, the conference constitutes an excellent forum to establish and nurture partnerships and relationships that accelerate the development and deployment of LiDAR technology in the automotive and mobility market.

What innovations do you hope to see over the next few years with regards to autonomous shuttles and the industry as a whole?

We, of course, expect to see the much higher deployment of autonomous vehicles not only in the traditional geo-fenced environments but also in urban centers.  The autonomous vehicle will contribute significantly to reduced emissions, eased traffic flow and of course, the increase in safety for both passengers and pedestrians.  The acceptance of autonomous shuttles is growing quickly, and the next phase in this evolution will most certainly be the advancements toward an increase in LiDAR technology in passenger cars leading to more vehicles operating at a level 3+

LeddarTech® is uniquely positioned to support Tier-1s in its delivery of LiDAR technology to the automotive industry with it’s the auto & mobility LiDAR platform. The LCA2 LeddarEngineTM, comprised of the LeddarCore® LCA2 SoC and LeddarSP signal processing software library, is at the core of LeddarTech’s auto and mobility LiDAR platform, which equips key suppliers of components and systems with the technology, tools and resources they need to design their own differentiated LiDAR offering and to meet the specific requirements of various advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous driving (AD) applications

With its ability to support various types of designs and components, including many options of light sources and wavelengths, photodetectors, illumination, and beam steering methods, the LCA2 LeddarEngineTM enables and enhances multiple solid-state LiDAR methods, including Flash and MEMS Hybrid Flash configurations. Hence, the LCA2 LeddarEngine is a key component of a highly versatile and scalable platform that can address a wide range of automotive and mobility applications.

The platform leverages affordable, readily available technologies and is supported by the Leddar® Ecosystem of partners who have developed automotive-grade components, software and tools that are ready to be used in the development of cost-effective SSLs based on the LeddarEngineTM. This shortens development cycles and accelerates the path to high-volume manufacturing, making the LeddarEngineTM the best LiDAR solution to meet the accelerated mass-market ramp-up.