Volvo Cars Invests in LiDAR Maker Luminar

LiDAR plays a key role in applications of intelligent transportation such as automatic vehicles. With the understanding, Volvo Cars announced its investment in Luminar, a U.S. based start-up developing advanced LiDAR sensor for self-driving cars.

(Image: Volvo)

By building the partnership with Luminar, Volvo expects to focus on implementing sensing technology on its cars. LiDAR technology uses pulsed laser signals to detect objects, which is an essential element for autonomous vehicles when driving under different traffic conditions and at high speed.

Luminar was founded in 2012 by Austin Russel, who was 17 years old when he dropped out from Stanford University to launch the company. The start-up has been working on LiDAR technology for autonomous vehicles and aims to make LiDAR sensor more accessible with reasonable price.

The investment from Volvo was through its new foundation, Volvo Cars Tech Fund, which aims to support worldwide start-ups with high potential technology. The organization focuses its investments on strategic technology trends like artificial intelligence, electrification, autonomous driving and digital mobility services. Those companies participating in the Volvo Cars Tech Fund will have an opportunity to validate their technologies and accelerate the pace of achieving product market fit.

Henrik Green, Senior Vice President for research and development at Volvo Cars, stated, “our collaboration with Luminar allows us to learn more about its promising technologies and takes Volvo Cars one step further to the highly autonomous cars of the future.”

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