Augusto Op den Bosch — Using the Virtual Proving Ground (VPG) to Expedite and Validate the Creation of Autonomous Solutions
From Tim Trent
Trimble is committed to delivering autonomy solutions that bring value to our customers faster than ever before. But creating autonomy solutions is not an easy task. These new technologies need to control real equipment out in the real world safely and efficiently. One of the most difficult challenges is getting access to the real machines to test the latest build, validate algorithms or verify that multiple components integrate correctly. Another challenge is access to ground truth. When data is collected in the field, one has to also obtain the best possible data that represents the “truth”. Any errors in your ground truth data will affect the accuracy of the estimated efficiency of the solution.
One of the technologies that has been identified as an enabler for creating complex solutions is simulation. For the past eight years, Trimble has promoted the Virtual Proving Ground as a way to optimize and share the benefits of high-fidelity simulations.
Even though there is a general consensus that simulation can solve these problems, it can also raise other challenges. One of the most critical ones is that there is little time between the moment when stakeholders decide that a simulation system needs to be used in a project and the moment when developers and testers need to have access to the actual simulator.
In this presentation, we will share the way the virtual proving ground (VPG) is being used to expedite the development of several autonomy projects in Trimble. The presentation will show examples of several custom simulators created with a just- in- time approach to deliver virtual equipment with hardware in the loop to testers, developers and stakeholders. Finally, we will present an overview of the latest and future upgrades of the VPG tools that have enabled the Trimble autonomy simulation team to deliver and continue to produce high fidelity solutions in record time.