Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, has announced the launch of the world's largest autonomous racing league, set to kick off in Q2 of 2024. The league is being spearheaded by ASPIRE, the program development arm of Abu Dhabi's Advanced Technology Research Council (ATRC), which is responsible for defining Abu Dhabi's research and development strategy.
The first race in the series will be an autonomous car race set to take place at the iconic Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, with a prize pool of up to USD 2.25 million. The event will feature Dallara-built Super Formula cars, which are among the fastest in the world, outside of Formula One. The usage of these cars has been enabled by Japan Race Promotion, Inc. (JRP).
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The Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League aims to push the boundaries of autonomous mobility by hosting challenges to advance R&D in autonomous racing and artificial intelligence (AI). Machine learning and reinforcement learning will be key to collecting data and developing the technology of these vehicles.
In addition to creating a community platform for motorsports fans, the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League will feature an open development model, supporting faster progress, faster testing, and greater innovation. Race viewers will be able to experience head-to-head autonomous car racing, with live updates from Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) infographics.
According to His Excellency, Faisal Al Bannai, Secretary General, Advanced Technology Research Council, “We are proud to announce the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League, where we will set new benchmarks for autonomous vehicles and help them pre-empt and prepare for unknown challenges as they become more mainstream.”
Yoshihisa Ueno, President, Japan Race Promotion, Inc., added, “Our SF23 race car, which will be used in the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League, is a huge leap forward in technical performance and, importantly, carbon neutrality, so it's very exciting to see it being driven by an autonomous technology stack. This partnership with ASPIRE is yet another example of our ambition and we cannot wait for the first race.”
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ASPIRE works in consultation with cross-sector industry stakeholders, universities, and research institutes to achieve its goals. With the launch of the Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League, the organization hopes to accelerate research and development in the field of autonomous mobility and AI, while also creating a new platform for innovation and collaboration.