The 2010 VisLab Intercontinental Autonomous Challenge (VIAC) remains a critical milestone in vehicular autonomy.
On July 20th, 2010, after nearly 400 days of preparation, four fully autonomous vans departed from Parma, Italy en route to Shanghai, China, in what would become an almost 10,000-mile-long road trip.
A driverless road trip.
This is an important distinction. Not only were the vans self-driving, but for many portions of the trip, they were operating without drivers behind the wheel, a significantly more complex challenge.
100 days later, on October 28th, the convoy arrived at the 2010 World Expo European Pavilion in Shanghai, China, having successfully navigated across nine different nations and two continents. They were met by a parade on the final day of the event, attended by the President of the Italian Republic.
Today marks the 10-year anniversary of the day VisLab’s team arrived at the Expo, establishing what is still considered a pioneering milestone in robotics. Even today, at a time when autonomous vehicles have become commonplace, this is a significant accomplishment—in 2010, it was nothing short of revolutionary.
Many of the same team members who participated in the VIAC challenge are still with VisLab in 2020, continuing their contributions to the field. Only now, their expertise is being used to power our diverse lineup of high-performance AI vision SoCs.
Today at Ambarella, we celebrate this remarkable achievement. Our warmest congratulations to our friends at VisLab, both past and present. We look forward to another ten years of working together to revolutionize intelligent mobility.
For more information about VIAC, please visit the historical website at https://vislab.it/viac/