TOKYO—Bridgestone Corp. and Japanese automation and robotics company ZMP Inc. have launched a development project aimed at utilizing automated driving in tire noise tests.
As part of the project, ZMP will develop an automated driving system that incorporates Bridgestone's tire test expertise, Bridgestone said a news release. The two companies, the tire maker added, already have succeeded in using automotive driving of manned vehicles at a Bridgestone's proving ground.
Work now will be done to achieve "SAE-Level 4" automated driving of unmanned vehicles for practical application in tire noise tests in 2019. ZMP's automated vehicle, "RoboCar MiniVan," will be used for the project.
The project has been launched in the wake of increasing regulatory pressure in Europe, Asia and Japan to reduce tire noise. Using automated vehicles, Bridgestone believes, will improve accuracy and efficiency of test tires while eliminating reliance on the skills and expertise of drivers.
In addition, Bridgestone hopes to use the experience in the future development of tires for self-driving cars and other next-generation vehicles.