Waymo is designing and testing its system to work safely and reliably in the toughest environments. Over the last few years the company has tested its vehicles in snowy Novi, Michigan, rainy Kirkland, Washington, foggy San Francisco, and of course those dusty haboobs in Phoenix, Arizona. This month, Waymo vehicles —Chrysler Pacificas and a Jaguar I-Pace — will be in Florida to begin heavy rain testing.
Heavy rain can create a lot of noise for the sensors and wet roads also may result in other road users behaving differently. Testing in these conditions will allows the car to understand the unique driving conditions, and get a better handle on how rain affects own vehicle movements, too.
During the summer months of Hurricane Season, Miami is one of the wettest cities in the U.S., averaging an annual 61.9 inches of rain and experiencing some of the most intense weather conditions in the country. The cars will be manually operated by the trained test drivers which allowing the company the opportunity to collect data of real-world driving situations in heavy rain.
The driverless cars will first be spending several weeks driving on a closed course in Naples where it will rigorously test sensor suite — which includes lidar, cameras, and radar — during the rainiest season in the south. Later in the month, the vehicles will be tested on the public roads in Miami.
Additionally, Florida residents will also be seeing Waymo’s driverless cars s on highways between Orlando, Tampa, Fort Myers and Miami.
Source: Waymo on Medium