Baidu is a Chinese search engine company which is often called the “Google of China”. Last year, it announced that it would develop its own self driving cars and trying to get ahead in the race of building autonomous cars. Recently the company announced that it will soon start testing its autonomous cars in the U.S.
Baidu plans to launch autonomous car for public use by 2018.
The announcement made by Andrew Ng, Baidu’s Chief Scientist. He was hired in 2014 by the company and has been leading a growing team of 160 people in Sunnyvale, Calif who mostly developing self driving car. On top of that he also has conducted a groundbreaking research at Stanford University where the open-source “robot operating system”, ROS was developed and used world-wide. He is also the co-founder of an online learning company, Coursera Inc.
Mr Ng released a testimonial which requesting the government to make small changes on the infrastructure to accommodate robot cars before the hearing by the U.S Senate Commerce Committee recently. The hearing discussed about the regulatory obstacles to autonomous vehicles which was attended by some of representatives from big companies such as Google, General Motors Co. and Delphi Automotive PLC as well as Duke University researcher Missy Louise Cummings. Unfortunately Mr Ng did not attend.
Baidu plans to roll out self driving shuttles running on a pre-configured route in a limited area in China by 2018. The company is using a modified BMW 3-series sedan to test for its autonomous driving technology and has already made commitments with several Chinese automakers to implement the system into their vehicles.