Torc Robotics, a company focused on autonomous vehicle tech in the commercial world that's turning its attention to the consumer market, is teaming up with leading auto industry chip supplier NXP Semiconductor on self-driving systems. Torc is using NXP's radar-specific chips to boost 360-degree imaging and offer real-time info about a vehicle's surroundings to its self-driving systems.
The Torc and NXP partnership will push efforts on behalf of Torc to deliver SAE Level 4 and Level 5 autonomy to the consumer vehicle market. The partnership will also extend beyond a simple supplier/supplied relationship, as both will work together to test new types of radar tech in autonomous system deployment.
Torc's team boasts engineers with experience dating all the way back to the 207 DARPA Urban Challenge for self-driving vehicles, but until recently it has focused on commercial, industrial and military markets. In June, it unveiled its consumer platform plans, and two Lexus RX SUVs it's been using for testing on real roads.
The goal for Torc is to help automotive OEMs and top-tier suppliers negotiate the new landscape of self-driving, with guidance gleaned from their own experience, and with hardware and software platforms to fill in the gaps in existing automaker autonomy programs.