Seoul Robotics to employ Cognata LiDAR Simulator

Above: Winter driving in difficult visibility conditions – in Cognata’s synthetic simulator

Cognata was chosen to provide a simulator of LiDAR sensors signals to Seoul Robotics, which develops software for analyzing data coming from the sensors, in order to extract information about the vehicle’s environment. The collaboration deepens Cognata’s grip on the ADAS systems market. Founded in 2016 by the CEO Danny Atsmon, the Rehovot-based (near Tel aviv) Cognata has developed a virtual platform used to train and test autonomous vehicles even before the vehicle hits the road for field tests.

The system is based on several layers: a static environment, a dynamic environment, sensors and cloud interface. The static environment is built from realistic imaging of entire cities, including streets, trees, road defects, etc. The dynamic layer mimics the behavior of other drivers on the road and the sensor layer mimics the information coming from each of the 40 different sensors found today in autonomous vehicles.

The chosen imaging software of Innoviz

Cognata is well acquainted with the field of LiDAR. In December 2019, it was selected by Innoviz to test Innoviz’s LiDAR technology. Cognata’s software can simulates how Innoviz’s LiDAR signals are reflected from different surfaces and materials, and how the sensors will function under different road conditions. A few days later it was also chosen by the Rehovot-based Foresight to test its QuadSight system, based on the use of two infrared cameras and two visible-light cameras, to produce a stereoscopic (three-dimensional) machine vision capability.

The agreement with Seoul Robotics is Cognata’s second major deal in Korea. In August 2020, it was selected by Hyundai MOBIS to supply a simulator for the development of ADAS systems and autonomous vehicles. Hyundai MOBIS is a Tier 1 supplier of the Korean automotive industry and manufactures auto parts for Hyundai, Kia and Genesis Motors.

Cognata Raised $18.5M for Autonomous Vehicles Simulation

Cognata has closed an $18.5 million funding round led by Scale Venture Partners with the participation of existing investors, Emerge, Maniv Mobility, and Airbus Ventures and also the addition of the Japanese Global IoT Technology Ventures. The company will use the funding to grow its engineering group and to start commercial operations in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Cognata developed an automotive simulation platform combines artificial intelligence, deep learning, and computer vision to provide a realistic virtual environment that accurately simulates real-world test driving. The method allows to validate autonomous vehicle safety via simulation, to accelerate the development by allowing the testing of a broad range of scenarios in a safe and controlled environment.

Driving a virtual car in a virtual street in a virtual city....
Driving a virtual car in a virtual street in a virtual city….

Cognata’s virtual reality simulator and engine enable autonomous car manufacturers to run thousands of different scenarios based on various geographic locations and driver behaviors, and sharing the road with other users. The company was founded in 2016 by a team of experts in deep learning, autonomous vehicles and computer vision, led by Danny Atsmon, the CEO and Founder (photo above).

Recently it announced that Autonomous Intelligent Driving GmbH (AID), a wholly-owned subsidiary of AUDI AG, selected Cognata as its autonomous vehicle simulation partner. “Simulation is critical to driving autonomous vehicle technology forward,” said Danny Atsmon.

Cognata uses patented computer vision and deep learning algorithms to automatically generate a whole city-simulator including buildings, roads , lane marks, traffic signs and even trees and bushes. According to Atsmon, “You need 10B miles, or hundreds of years of active driving, in order to bring an autonomous vehicle to the human level. We can shave off years from the time and budget required to bring an autonomous vehicle to the market.”