Autonomous Driving

The Quest to Engineer the Self-Driving Car: New Partnership with Udacity

September 23, 2016

To train engineering talent and to spur autonomous driving innovation, Mercedes-Benz Research & Development North America (MBRDNA) inked a partnership with Udacity, the online education provider, to offer a Nanodegree program for students to become engineers in self-driving car technology. The MBRDNA team based in Silicon Valley works on all areas of self-driving cars, including sensor fusion, situation assessment, maneuver and trajectory planning and deep learning. The Mercedes-Benz research teams are working hand-in-hand with Udacity to develop the curriculum of the Nanodegree program. Applications opened on September 13th and will be accepted through September 27th. The program is comprised of three different terms. Each term is 12 weeks long, for a period of approximately 9 months. The Nanodegree program includes classes and projects in computer vision, robotics, sensor fusion, localization and deep learning. As part of students’ capstone project, they will build autonomous software that will be applied to an actual vehicle. The program offers students a unique opportunity to potentially work with Mercedes-Benz on the technology developments going into autonomous driving.

“We are perpetually pushing the boundaries of autonomous driving,” said Axel Gern, head of Autonomous Driving at MBRDNA. “By helping develop the curriculum for the Self-Driving Car Engineer Nanodegree, we are investing not only in potential talent to contribute to our cutting-edge developments but in the future of autonomous driving.”

Mercedes-Benz is pioneering some of the most audacious innovations in this field and their contribution to the program is invaluable.

Mercedes-Benz was the first automotive manufacturer to open a research and development center in Silicon Valley in 1995. In September 2014, MBRDNA became one of the first automotive manufacturers to be issued with an official license by the state of California for testing self-driving vehicles on public roads. Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram to stay up-to-date with the latest news and announcements.