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NXP, Kalray to Work on Autonomous Driving Platform

NXP Semiconductors N.V. has entered a strategic partnership with fabless semiconductor and intelligent solutions provider Kalray Corporation to promote safe and reliable autonomous driving platform. The partnership will combine NXP's scalable portfolio of functional safety products for advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS) and Central Compute with Kalray's high-performance intelligent Massively Parallel Processor Array (MPPA) processors.

The new platform addresses the performance, safety and near-term commercial needs of levels 2 and 3 autonomous driving with an eye to longer-term release in level 4 and 5 autonomous vehicles. The collaboration also aims to take on the safety shortcomings of pilots and experimental offerings in the autonomous development space.

The autonomous driving ecosystem faces technology challenges and concerns related to the safety of self-driving vehicles. Recent research indicates that while consumers are enthusiastic about an autonomous future, many hold deep reservations about whether self-driving vehicles will ever be safe. This perception has been reinforced by high-profile accidents involving prototypes and experimental vehicles.

To overcome these technology and consumer confidence gaps, the autonomous ecosystem needs fail-safe automotive systems that enable a vehicle's central processing unit to protect drivers through a complex and heavily tested safety approach. NXP and Kalray have joined forces in a partnership to co-develop a central computing platform with safety as a foundation.

NXP will offer the host processor of the platform, its high-performance S32 processor, with its safety critical ASIL D and ASIL B capabilities. This will help the platform tackle the requirements of automotive central computing and will target path planning functions. Kalray will deliver the world-class performance of its MPPA processors to safely handle the machine learning aspects of perception.

The first example of this partnership will be the integration of Kalray's MPPA processors into the NXP BlueBox, an embedded autonomous driving platform. This iteration will address autonomous challenges in power and safety with Arm-based technology and will be designed to support open standards.