Carnegie Mellon Engineering

General Motors Collaborative Research Lab Overview

General Motors Corporation's collaborative research lab at Carnegie Mellon aims to speed up research efforts on the next generation of vehicle information technology. Experts in Dependable Embedded Systems, Design Methodologies, Human Computer Interaction, and Wired and Wireless Multimedia, work toward a vision: "smarter" cars that share the driver’s workload and keep their eyes on the road.


Research Goals

  • Dependable Embedded Systems: To improve automotive safety and reliability by adapting vehicle electronic configurations and functionality in situations in which the vehicle, the driver, or both are not operating at peak effectiveness.

  • Design Methodologies: To enable vehicle-level design, simulation, and validation of the computer system for the automobile of the future.

  • Human Computer Interaction: To improve security and driver-vehicle interfaces by building a car that is capable of analyzing the driver's intention and watching the physical and mental status of the driver for any impairments or information overload.

  • Wired and Wireless Multimedia: To enable the exchange of information between vehicles on the road, between vehicles and fixed network access points, and between vehicles and portable appliances within the vehicles, using wireless communications systems.


Current Research Activities

The "smart car" that Carnegie Mellon researchers are developing is:

  • A "companion" that recognizes your settings and keeps you alert.

  • "Context aware"—responsive to your needs and preferences, road and weather conditions, and information from Internet, on demand.

  • Equipped with a "gesture interface" that lets you control the car's electronics with a wave of your hand.

  • Built with a speech recognition system tuned to your voice that connects your car to your handheld computers and cell phone.

  • Outfitted with the latest wireless networks and Global Positioning Satellite technology to keep you safe and on time.

  • Assembled with a heads-up display for operating the radio, navigating, checking email, and your schedule.

  • Able to automatically modify its own behavior, make "graceful upgrades" to new versions, monitor mechanical and electrical problems, and repair itself until you can get to the shop.