Launched in 2020 in collaboration with O2, the Darwin SatCom Lab is the first space in the UK designed for testing self-driving car technology. It’s based at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire.
We have two on-site connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) that can be controlled remotely. We use these to test and refine our carbon tracking technology, our ability to switch seamlessly between 5G and satellite communications, and more.
The ability to blend terrestrial and satellite communications opens up new possibilities for CAVs. Autonomous vehicles need to receive, process and interpret large quantities of information in real time, which means that a reliable connection is valuable. As 5G isn’t yet available everywhere, supplementing terrestrial networks with satellite connectivity makes autonomous vehicles more feasible in rural areas.
The Darwin SatCom Lab allows these ideas to be put into action using actual autonomous cars. Its combination of hardware, software and the physical space to experiment means that any interested organisation can test and refine the technology’s possibilities on a practical level.
If you’re interested in finding out how the Darwin SatCom Lab can help to solve the challenges your business is facing, get in touch.