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Fujitsu, VMware, to play with cars in the cloud

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Fujitsu and VMware are collaborating on the Fujitsu OTA Reprograming Solution, which will be combined with VMware IoT solutions for connected car and autonomous driving solutions. 

Fujitsu and VMware are to collaborate on IoT solutions for the automobile industry. The Fujitsu OTA Reprograming Solution will be combined with VMware IoT solutions for connected car and autonomous driving solutions.

Several automobile manufacturers are investing in technologies for connected cars, which will use new cloud services.

As the number of electronic control units (ECUs) that manage automotive parts increases in cars, the software that is embedded into the ECUs has become more sophisticated, and in turn, is becoming more challenging to manage. Automobile recalls due to software issues can pose challenges for automobile manufacturers.

With more technologies being integrated into vehicles, it is imperative for automobile manufacturers to have the ability to quickly and easily reprogram software as required, while also being able to manage and monitor software versions individually. Fujitsu and VMware will provide a one-stop service to meet automobile manufacturers’ reliability requirements by integrating VMware IoT solutions into Fujitsu’s OTA Reprograming Solution.

Fujitsu and VMware provided the following information on technologies that will form part of the one-stop cloud service for connected cars:

Fujitsu

·       The software of ECUs in further advanced functions come from the popularization of connected cars. Fujitsu will provide its OTA Reprograming Solution, connecting with the cloud environment, and apply the delta update technology of software to efficiently manage and update essential software for connected cars.

·       Fujitsu will provide security technologies mounted through the business of Fujitsu feature phones, smartphones, etc. from automobile development sites to the assembly factories and throughout the automobile’s lifecycle.

VMware

·       VMware IoT solutions, with Fujitsu’s OTA Reprogramming Solution will enable automobile manufacturers to quickly provide OTA software updates as necessary to all the devices in a car.

·       VMware IoT solutions can expand rapidly, providing agility for the global deployment of services and advanced security technologies for connected cars.

Starting with developments for the automotive industry, Fujitsu and VMware will also collaborate to expand their combined offerings of differentiated services in the mobility space.

“Fujitsu has partnered with VMware since 2006, and we are pleased to say that our partnership with VMware now extends to the IoT industry as well,” said Shikou Kikuta, head of the Mobility IoT Business Unit at Fujitsu. “For our OTA Reprograming Solution, as we are seeing increasing demands from automobile manufacturers and their tier 1 components manufacturers as a global standard, we will provide an OTA platform for connected cars by integrating VMware IoT solutions into our secure and effective OTA Reprograming Solution. We look forward to fostering these offerings in our mobile business,”

Cars

Volvo to use blockchain to trace battery cobalt

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Volvo Cars will become the first carmaker to implement global traceability of cobalt used in its batteries by applying blockchain technology. The announcement follows the reveal last month of the company’s first fully electric car, the XC40 Recharge.

Traceability of raw materials used in the production of lithium-ion batteries, such as cobalt, is one of the main sustainability challenges faced by carmakers. Volvo says its committed to full traceability, ensuring that customers can drive electrified Volvos knowing the material for the batteries has been sourced responsibly.

“It is a mineral that is essential to the production of the lithium-ion batteries that power electric cars,” says Greg Maruszewski, Managing Director of Volvo Cars South Africa. “But, sadly, it has long been suspected that some of the cobalt comes from mines that don’t use ethical mining practices. Now, thanks to blockchain traceability, we will know that the cobalt has been sourced responsibly. We are the first and only vehicle manufacturer that can make this statement. Accordingly, South African motorists who buy a Volvo in our XC90 T8 range can do so with pride – with the guaranteed knowledge that only ethical mining practices have taken place in the cobalt supply chain.”

Blockchain technology, which establishes a transparent and reliable shared data network, significantly boosts transparency of the raw material supply chain as the information about the material’s origin cannot be changed undetected.

Volvo Cars has now reached an agreement with its two global battery suppliers, CATL of China and LG Chem of South Korea, and leading global blockchain technology firms to implement traceability of cobalt starting this year.

Technology firms Circulor and Oracle operate the blockchain technology across CATL’s supply chain following a successful pilot earlier this summer, while the Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), together with responsible sourcing specialists RCS Global and IBM, is rolling out the technology in LG Chem’s supply chain.

“We have always been committed to an ethical supply chain for our raw materials,” says Martina Buchhauser, head of procurement at Volvo Cars. “With blockchain technology we can take the next step towards ensuring full traceability of our supply chain and minimising any related risks, in close collaboration with our suppliers.”

A blockchain is a digital ledger containing a list of records linked to each other via cryptography. Within supply chains, the technology creates records of transactions, which cannot be changed while also enforcing a common set of rules for what data can be recorded. This allows participants to verify and audit transactions independently.

In this particular case, data in the blockchain include the cobalt’s origin, attributes such as weight and size, the chain of custody and information establishing that participants’ behavior is consistent with OECD supply chain guidelines. This approach helps create trust between participants along a supply chain.

Volvo Cars last month launched the XC40 Recharge, the first of an upcoming family of fully electric cars under the Recharge banner. By 2025, it expects half of its global sales to consist of fully electric cars, with the rest hybrids.

Last month, Volvo Cars also launched an ambitious climate plan, which includes a radical reduction of carbon emissions by 40% per vehicle by 2025, as well as a continued commitment to ethical business across its entire operations and supply chain.

CATL and LG Chem are renowned battery manufacturers, both with long and successful track records supplying lithium-ion batteries to the global automotive industry. They fulfil Volvo Cars’ strict sourcing guidelines in terms of technology leadership, responsible supply chains, reduction of carbon emissions and competitive cost models.

The agreements between Volvo Cars, CATL and LG Chem cover the supply of batteries over the coming decade for next-generation Volvo and Polestar models, including the XC40 Recharge.

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Jaguar tech delivers wake-up call for drivers

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From long working hours to daily school runs and the potentially stressful commute, Jaguar understands life for many is busier than ever. We’re so busy that 1 in 8 UK drivers admit to having fallen asleep at the wheel* – and this causes up to 25% of fatal accidents**.

As part of a wider vision to enrich and improve the lives of its drivers and passengers, Jaguar has developed a piece of technology, Driver Condition Monitor, which alerts the driver if it detects the tell-tale signs of drowsiness. The system takes inputs from thousands of data points, some of which are measured every thousandth of a second, including the Electronic Power Assisted Steering system, pedal inputs and general driving behaviour. Complex algorithms analyse all this to accurately determine whether a driver is becoming fatigued.

Fitted as standard on E-PACE and across the Jaguar range, Driver Condition Monitor detects if the driver is starting to feel drowsy and when required, provides an early warning to take a break. E-PACE’s instrument cluster displays a coffee-cup icon and sounds an alert when a prompt is needed. 

Edmund King, Director of the AA Charitable Trust, said: “The statistics around drowsy drivers are shocking, even more so when you realise it is an under-reported issue. Any measure that helps reduce the risk of tired drivers, such as Jaguar’s Driver Condition Monitor, is to be welcomed. The only real cure for tiredness is to rest – if drivers feel tired, or are alerted to possible tiredness by their car, they should pull over at the next safe place, drink a caffeinated drink and take a short nap.”

David Willey, Assisted and Automated Driving Attributes Senior Manager, Jaguar, said: “At Jaguar, we continuously review the latest advances in vehicle safety and develop innovative technologies to improve the driving experience, making it safer and more enjoyable. Driver Condition Monitor, along with a range of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are offered as standard across the Jaguar range.”

The Jaguar E-PACE is also fitted with an array of other advanced driver assistance systems to help keep the driver and occupants safe. Standard features on all Jaguar models include Automated Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist, Cruise Control with Speed Limiter, front and rear parking aid and a rear facing camera.

The Jaguar E-PACE’s unique combination of sporty looks, dynamic driving and innovative safety features mean it’s fun to drive and safe, too. The SUV you’ll never tire of, is priced from R684,400 in South Africa and can be configured at www.jaguar.co.za.

AA Charitable Trust research. AA-Populus 11-17 September 2018. Online poll of 20,561 drivers

** Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS) Fitness to Drive report 2016

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