Nvidia’s supercomputer is driving Volvo’s AV mission

Nvidia explains how its supercomputer is powering 280 trillion operations per second in Volvo’s EX90 SUV. By Elle Farrell-Kingsley

In November 2022, Volvo Cars unveiled its flagship Volvo EX90 SUV. Available for pre-order in select markets, the EX90 is just the beginning of Volvo Cars’ plan to deliver a purely electric, software-defined line-up by 2030—releasing a new electric vehicle (EV) every year through 2025.

Inside the EX90 is an artificial intelligence (AI) computer powered by Nvidia. Its Drive Orin platform enables most of the vehicle’s core functions, from safety and infotainment to battery management. The EX90 is the first Volvo car hardware ready to deliver unsupervised autonomous driving (SAE Level 4+). “We will offer the autonomous driving feature called Ride Pilot once thoroughly verified as safe, and all necessary approvals have been secured,” Patrik Björler, Volvo Cars’ Strategic Product Owner of ADAS and Autonomous Drive, told Automotive World  previously.

Volvo's EX90 release in November 2022 will be the first to take full advantage of Nvidia's capabilities

To date, more than 250 automakers and transportation and mobility-as-a-service providers are developing autonomous vehicles (AVs) and tackling one of the most complex AI challenges: "It's simply not possible to encounter every scenario they must be able to handle by testing on real roads. As such, 2023 will see many in the industry turn to the virtual world for help," says Danny Shapiro, Vice President of Automotive at Nvidia.

Drive Sim

To facilitate these developments, Nvidia has created a platform called Drive Sim. This cloud-based simulator allows developers and automakers to test and validate a car's AI and autonomous features. Although some might want to determine whether a car can detect a child running into traffic at night, Shapiro states that putting a real child in danger can never be an option.

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