On April 27 on the straight of the Space Shuttle airstrip at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, the car created by the Politecnico di Milano-PoliMOVE broke the world speed record for a fully autonomous car on a straight (the previous record held by Roborace was 282.42 kph). The Politecnico Team had already achieved the record on April 26 but decided to raise the bar and improve its performance, Tech Xplore reports.
The speed of 309.3 kph was obtained as an average of over 1 km in two consecutive attempts in opposite directions (to eliminate the effects of the wind). The Politecnico was the only team to attempt this, thanks to their victory in Las Vegas in the Indy Autonomous Challenge. In a few days, the team will attempt to replicate the feat on the Atlanta circuit, this time on a race track and not on a straight.
“We saw what the future holds for autonomous vehicles, and credit goes to the entire PoliMOVE team, especially Dr. Brandon Dixon of the University of Alabama,” said professor Sergio Savaresi, team lead of Politecnico di Milano.
“We were running a car operating on algorithms alone, where precision is paramount, and any small prediction error could have created a completely different outcome. This test run was exhilarating, and we are thrilled with the world record, but we’re also excited by the fact that this data will be made available to all, and the industry will benefit from our work and learnings.”