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Bengaluru based minus zero unveils zPod autonomous driving concept

In contrast to numerous autonomous vehicles, the zPod does not rely on LIDAR (light detection and ranging) technology. Instead, it utilizes a configuration of six cameras, with four positioned on the sides and two located at the front and back.

Bengaluru-based autonomous driving start-up, Minus Zero, has introduced the zPod, which it claims to be India’s first autonomous vehicle. Rather than being an automotive manufacturer, Minus Zero positions itself as a tech firm providing autonomous driving technology to other manufacturers to enhance their Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). The primary objective of Minus Zero is to address issues such as traffic congestion, road accidents, and associated injuries and fatalities. The company emphasizes the significant fuel wastage and financial losses resulting from traffic inefficiencies, highlighting the potential impact of its autonomous technology.

In contrast to many autonomous vehicles, the zPod does not rely on LIDAR technology. Instead, it employs an array of six cameras, strategically positioned with four on the sides and two at the front and back. Minus Zero showcased its True Vision Autonomy concept, which utilizes these cameras as sensors to navigate obstacles. According to the company, this concept can be adapted to different vehicle types, including electric vehicles (EVs) or internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. Minus Zero also claims that its autonomous driving technology can be retrofitted to existing cars equipped with an engine control module.

The company aims to address key challenges faced during autonomous vehicle development, such as expensive hardware, extensive data requirements, navigation through complex traffic conditions, and unpredictable infrastructure. Minus Zero introduces a new form of AI called Nature Inspired AI (NIA), which it believes can overcome the limitations of the current AI paradigm. By employing physics-aware vision and predictive decision-making similar to the human brain, Minus Zero aims to achieve autonomous driving at Level 5, which requires no human intervention in real-world conditions.

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