Purdue University reached out to Dataspeed to build up an autonomous testing and research platform utilizing Dataspeed’s Drive By-Wire Kit. The Dataspeed engineering team worked closely with the university to understand their application requirements to outfit a Ford Fusion with a carefully integrated sensor suite.

Dataspeed Integrations

This top university requested a 2020 Ford Fusion as its by-wire platform. A custom Dataspeed roof rack structure with a powder-coated tube frame design was vital for the project. Clamp mounts were attached to the roof rack which allow for flexible adjustment of the orientation of sensors. The clamp mounts were affixed with sensor mounting brackets to fasten GPS antennas, an Ouster OS1-64 high-resolution lidar, and a weatherproof Lucid Imaging Triton RGB camera with ethernet interface. Dataspeed engineers completed intrinsic and extrinsic calibrations to the RGB camera to make sure it is producing accurate data for AV research.

An instrumentation bar was fixed to the front of the vehicle with a Continental radar and additional space for the university to utilize for additional radars. An Icotek IP65-rated cable entry system was integrated into the rear of the vehicle’s roof and into the cargo area to allow cables to run out of modular weatherproof grommets. In the trunk of the vehicle lies the instrumentation storage which was built to store the Dataspeed intelligent Power Distribution System, a Nuvo ruggedized PC, and GPS receiver. Dataspeed engineers finished out the project by completing a calibration of all the sensors. Purdue will get a documentation package that shows where each sensor is located and oriented on the vehicle relative to the origin which is the center of the rear axle.

Purdue University now has a fully-integrated test vehicle that they can use for research and development of autonomous features and capabilities.

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