July 24, 2021

Robocar unveiled in Barcelona

This week was the “Mobile World Congress” in Barcelona. The car is playing an increasingly important role. We can cite for example Peugeot which unveiled the Instinct concept there. There, it is the autonomous Robocar that interests us.

Remember, almost a year ago, in partnership with Formula E, the launch of Roborace was announced. This race will take place “soon” on the sidelines of the e-Prix with fully autonomous cars. After unveiling 3D views of the machine, then a prototype temporarily with a pilot, the “zero space” in chips and carbon is revealed.

Aesthetically, the zero place changes little. However, the various radars and lidars

are much better integrated and only exceeds the “tower” which carries a 360 ° camera for television broadcasts, cameras for the car, a Pitot probe and a light indicating the “status” of the car. Obviously, we can still distinguish the lidars on each side of the front wheels, the rear one housed above the diffuser, but for the rest, the radars are hidden behind the hull and the various cameras are relatively invisible. We will also add 18 ultrasonic sensors.

320 km / h peak

The car is designed by the German Daniel Simon. He posts (on the left of the photo) alongside Denis Sverdlov, the owner of the series, as well as Alejandro Agag, owner of Formula e. As a reminder, the car is close to the ton (975 kg) and has 4 electric motors of 300 kW. However, the power is limited by the battery. The latter can deliver 540 kW which still makes 735 possible horsepower distributed over the 4 wheels.

4.80m long and 2 wide, the robocar still has to learn before embarking on “frantic” races. On the sidelines of the Buenos Aires e-Prix, Roborace ran two “Devbots” with different algorithms. This ended in contact with the wall for one of the two. On this test, the cars have almost reached 190 km / h while the Robocar is announced for 320 km / h peak.

Even if the purpose of these races remains a mystery to motorsport fans, we can still recognize the technological performance of these autonomous cars.

A radar uses radio waves, a lidar uses light waves via a laser.

Source and illustration: Roborace