Safety is the highest priority for car makers, for both the obvious technology factors associated with autonomous systems controlling all aspects of driving, but also to ensure that human passengers can trust their automated driver, says Lakshmi Mandyam.
In my role as Arm’s automotive lead, my team and I are constantly talking with both car makers and our automotive ecosystem (the top 15 automotive chip makers license Arm IP) discussing progress toward fully-autonomous driving. We of course talk about how we can address their performance, power and security requirements, but most of the discussions often focus on safety.
Safety is the highest priority for car makers we talk with, for both the obvious technology factors associated with autonomous systems controlling all aspects of driving, but also to ensure that human passengers can trust their automated driver. If consumers don’t trust the autonomous systems in their cars are safe, then mass market acceptance of this technology will be slow to happen.
Ironically, it’s a human factor, driver error, autonomous driving is expected to eliminate. Considering 94 percent of all accidents are a result of driver error, fully-autonomous driving is expected to significantly reduce the number of accidents and fatalities. It is why safety cannot be an afterthought and take a backseat to performance, power-efficiency and security when developing autonomous-class SoCs and systems. Unfortunately, the path to level 5 autonomy has been paved with prototypes, often based on power-hungry, expensive data center CPUs lacking even the most basic functional safety features.
Arm has prioritized safety for years now and it is a key reason why Arm IP is in 65 percent of the silicon used in ADAS applications. Our automotive ecosystem has access to the industry’s broadest array of functional safety IP with the latest ISO certifications. To further ensure our silicon partners get a head start on safety, today we’re announcing the Arm Safety Ready program which centralizes Arm’s massive investment in safety, enabling our silicon partners and the entire automotive supply chain to accelerate their timelines for bringing safer products to market faster.
But our safety leadership doesn’t stop with integrating the latest certifications and standards. Today, we’re also announcing availability of the first autonomous-class processor with integrated safety, the new Arm Cortex-A76AE, which has been uniquely designed for automotive and includes Split-Lock technology, a game-changing safety innovation available for the first time in application processors.
Arm has been designing chips for automotive applications since 1996 and only Arm can address the compute needs of the entire vehicle from bumper to bumper. It’s why the top 15 automotive chip makers are Arm licensees, and why Arm-based silicon powers more than 65 percent of today’s ADAS applications as well as 85 percent of IVI applications. By delivering safe, autonomous-class compute solutions to the industry, Arm and its ecosystem are ensuring safety is not an afterthought and helping car makers earn the consumer trust required for the mass deployment of safe and fully-autonomous vehicles.