Seoul National University Starts Testing Its Self-Driving Cars on Regular Roads


Seoul National University started testing their self-driving cars on regular roads. It introduced two types of self-driving cars that are applied with different platforms and this is its attempt to enhance self-driving technology. Although verification tests of self-driving cars are slower in South Korea than other countries due to road regulations, Seoul National University has decided to focus on increasing level of completion by strengthening judgment and control of its self-driving cars on street regulations and blind spots.

Seoul National University ‘s Intelligent Automotive IT Research Center (Professor (Director) Seo Seung-woo) has started verification tests of its self-driving cars ‘SNUver’ and ‘SNUvi’ in Yeoouido region on the 22nd and will carry out these tests until end of this year.


SNUver is a 3rd generation model, which was introduced for the first time in November of 2015, and is based on inline sensor structure. SNUvi on the other hand is based on rectangular sensor structure. Although they both have 4 LIDARs, SNUvi has 3 to 4 more cameras than SNUver and has better ability to recognize surroundings in cities. SNUvi will be seen around Yeoouido as soon as Seoul National University obtains qualifications from Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport sometime during this month to have SNUvi on regular roads.


Considering complicated road conditions with heavy traffic volumes, these verification tests will focus on increasing performance of recognition and judgment of Seoul National University’s self-driving cars on other vehicles, pedestrians, lanes, signals, and signs. Also it is planning to partially apply AI (Artificial Intelligence) technologies that includes learning abilities so that its self-driving cars can exhibit high level of self-driving technologies in variety of city environments such as main roads, narrow roads, and tunnels between tall buildings and variety of construction sites.

"We have developed performance of SNUver by testing it and driving it more than 20,000 kilometers around Seoul National University Gwanak Campus for about 2 years and without any accidents." said Professor Seo Seung-woo. "We are going to develop high level of self-driving technologies that are optimized for every environments regardless of changes in weather."

By continuously testing SNUver and SNUvi in Yeoouido until end of this year, research teams from Seoul National University are going to verify suitability of self-driving technologies according to traffic infrastructures and regulations based on variety of data that is collected from verification tests along with stabilizing driving performance of these two cars.


"Compared to how other countries started testing self-driving technologies on regular roads since 2010, research on self-driving technologies in South Korea is significantly slow due to road regulations." said Professor Seo Seung-woo. "Although it is expected that it will take about 10 years to implement perfect self-driving technology, our goal is to prove that SNUver and SNUvi will be able to self-drive on their own in Yeoouido within 2 to 3 years."

Staff Reporter Park, Taejoon | [email protected]

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