UK-based autonomous vehicle (AV) technology firm Wayve is working with Microsoft to use supercomputing infrastructure to support the development of artificial intelligence (AI)-based models for AVs on a global scale.
The move builds on the firms’ existing partnership, which saw Wayve deploy Microsoft Azure to deliver autonomous driving technology at scale.
The new step in the partnership will bring together Wayve's expertise using deep neural networks and vast quantities of data to train AI models with Microsoft’s engineering knowledge in powering large-scale AI systems. Together, they aim to bring self-driving technology to more places and customers sooner.
“Joining forces with Microsoft to design the supercomputing infrastructure needed to accelerate deep learning for autonomous mobility is an opportunity that we are honoured to lead,” said Alex Kendall, CEO of Wayve. “Deep learning systems thrive on data, and we’ve put an immense amount of effort into understanding what it takes to get these systems on the road. We are excited by the opportunities that this collaboration will create as we push deep learning to new levels of scale.”
While traditional self-driving systems rely on expensive hardware and complex systems that can take years to engineer, Wayve’s data-driven approach enables AV systems to adapt to new scenarios. British businesses Asda, Ocado and DPD are already trialling Wayve’s AV technology as part of their delivery operations, collecting driving data from vans fitted with the technology.
As Wayve works to scale its technology, it will use Microsoft Azure as its primary cloud platform and to implement supercomputing technologies that can “power the future of autonomy”.
“Supercomputing capabilities are key to processing the immense amount of data required for the simulation, validation and training of AI models that enable safe and secure autonomous driving,” said Mark Russinovich, chief technology officer of Microsoft Azure. “Wayve is combining its expertise in deep learning-based autonomous vehicle systems with Microsoft Azure computing power to bring self-driving transportation experiences to more people and organisations faster.”