Self-driving vehicles equipped with Oxford-developed autonomy software were tested successfully in public for the first time in the UK in October. The demonstration in Milton Keynes was coordinated by the Transport Systems Catapult (TSC) and marked the conclusion of the LUTZ Pathfinder project, which ran for 18 months.
The autonomy software running the vehicle, called Selenium, originated in Oxford University’s Oxford Robotics Institute with funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Selenium uses data from cameras and LIDAR systems to navigate its way around the environment. Selenium is being commercialised and was integrated onto an electric vehicle by Oxford University spinout company Oxbotica.
The vehicle demonstration took place on pavements around Milton Keynes train station and business district. In the future, it is expected that vehicles like those demonstrated in Milton Keynes will be used for local transportation in urban areas.