Philip Koopman is an associate professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering with additional affiliations with the Software and Societal Systems Department and the Robotics Institute. He leads research on safe and secure embedded systems and teaches cost-effective embedded system design techniques. He has over 20 years of experience with autonomous vehicle safety, dating back to the Carnegie Mellon Navlab team and the Automated Highway Systems (AHS) program.

Koopman’s most recent projects include using stress testing and run time monitoring to ensure safety for a variety of vehicle and robotic applications for research, industry, and defense applications. He has additional experience with automotive and industrial functional safety, including testifying as an expert in vehicle safety class action litigation and consulting to NHTSA. He is a co-founder of Edge Case Research, which provides tools and services for autonomous vehicle testing and safety validation.

His pre-university career includes experience as a US Navy submarine officer, an embedded CPU designer at Harris Semiconductor, and an embedded system architect at United Technologies. He is a senior member of IEEE and ACM, and a member of SAE.

A308 Hamerschlag Hall
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Philip Koopman
Philip Koopman

Software Safety for Autonomous Vehicles

Self-Driving Cars Safety Tips Playlist


1989 Ph.D., Computer Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University

1982 Master of Engineering, Computer and Systems Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

1982 BS, Computer and Systems Engineering, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Media mentions


Koopman comments on the role of current driver monitoring systems in prevention of road fatalities

ECE’s Phil Koopman comments on the role of current driver monitoring systems (DMS) in the prevention of road fatalities.

Market Watch

Koopman discusses the safety of robotaxis

ECE’s Phil Koopman was quoted by Market Watch on the safety of robotaxis, specifically mentioning how there is currently not enough data on robotaxis to guarantee public safety. “In the U.S. human drivers might see one fatality per 100 million vehicle miles. Companies who have a small fraction of that number of miles—7.1 million in the latest Waymo study—are nowhere near knowing how fatalities will turn out,” Koopman stated.


Koopman quoted on AI’s role in autonomous vehicle development

ECE’s Phil Koopman spoke to Axios about AI’s role in the development of autonomous vehicles. “Learning-based AVs can be taught driving skills more quickly, but the black-box nature of machine learning-based behavior makes it more difficult to validate safety,” Koopman told the outlet.

The Associated Press

Koopman discusses GM’s robotaxi tests in Phoenix

ECE’s Phil Koopman spoke with the Associated Press about General Motor’s robotaxi tests, which will begin soon in Phoenix, Arizona.

BNN Bloomberg

Koopman comments on Tesla’s Autopilot recall

ECE’s Phil Koopman was quoted in a story by BNN Bloomberg about recent probes initiated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration into automated driving systems from companies such as Waymo and Tesla.

Fast Company

Koopman discusses Tesla lawsuits and safety concerns

ECE’s Phil Koopman spoke with Fast Company about Tesla’s recent settlement involving a deadly crash involving their autopilot feature.

Daily Mail

Koopman quoted on Tesla safety issues

ECE’s Phil Koopman was quoted by Daily Mail about an incident in which a Tesla owner nearly drove into a moving train while using Tesla’s Full Self-Driving mode. “People are dying due to misplaced confidence in Tesla Autopilot capabilities. Even simple steps could improve safety,” Koopman said.


Koopman talks Waymo incident

ECE’s Phil Koopman, speaking to MSN, commented on a recent incident in which Waymo’s self-driving robotaxi broke traffic laws while navigating through San Francisco. “We're seeing a lot of loose ends that the technology isn't quite there, the companies are claiming it's safer but things like driving the wrong way down the street as long as there is no crash they would say don't count for unsafe,” said Koopman.


Koopman quoted on Tesla recall

ECE’s Phil Koopman was quoted in Yahoo!Tech about a recent investigation into how Tesla fixed a recall that affected more than 2 million vehicles equipped with its Autopilot feature.


Koopman quoted on Tesla’s robotaxis

ECE’s Phil Koopman was quoted in Forbes on the feasibility of Tesla’s robotaxis.

U.S. News

Koopman talks to U.S. News about Tesla’s focus on self-driving robotaxis

ECE’s Phil Koopman talks to U.S. News about Tesla’s focus on self-driving robotaxis. “Everyone else has found out that what they thought was a two- or three-year project turns out to be a 10 or 20-year project. Tesla’s found that out too,” he says.


Koopman shares his thoughts on attacks against driverless cars

Phil Koopman shares his thoughts with MarketPlace on potential motives behind the attacks on driverless cars.