Ordnance Survey gives mapping guidelines to help self-driving vehicles ‘see’ around corners

car on map

The UK’s national mapping agency, Ordnance Survey (OS), has published a report which sets out global standards for high definition mapping for the safe use of self-driving vehicles.

The report highlights key requirements for maps used by self-driving vehicles. The suggestions include:

  • Resolution better than 5cm to ensure vehicles can operate in complex environments.
  • Information on curbs, street-level features like lamp-posts, pedestrian crossings and road markings.
  • Real-time updates to let self-driving cars ‘see’ around corners for temporary objects in the road like skips or roadworks.
  • A neutrally hosted platform for mapping data.

The research is being carried out in partnership with Zenzic, which was created by the UK Government and industry to coordinate a national platform for testing and developing connected and self-driving vehicles in the UK. Zenzic is channelling £200m in investment into the British self-driving industry.

Daniel Ruiz, Zenzic, CEO commented: “The UK’s goal is to be able to benefit from self-driving vehicles on our roads at scale by 2030, a target that requires the development of technologies and tools which do not fully exist today.

“Our report with Ordnance Survey is another stake in the ground for the UK as a leader in the self-driving revolution and shows how the UK is building on its expertise in areas like mapping to drive the world forward.”

Simon Navin, Ordnance Survey’s Head of Innovation Programmes, said: “The economic and societal benefits that can be achieved through the introduction of self-driving vehicles on U.K. roads should be significant.

“Through our work with Zenzic we are helping define the geospatial and mapping requirements that will accelerate the testing and adoption of self-driving technologies so that these benefits can be realised safely and efficiently.”