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Ottawa’s autonomous vehicle test track is getting another round of investment from its local partners, including several Kanata North companies looking to test their technology and services on the 16-kilometre track. 

Blackberry QNX, Ericsson, Nokia, Kongsberg Geospatial, TÜV SÜD and a handful of other local tech firms recently pledged $10 million in equipment towards the recently rebranded Area X.O track, which will be applied alongside $7 million from the federal government.

The “smart” roadway includes special sensors, intersections and potential distractions to test a vehicle’s ability to respond in real time – technology that is connected by a broadband internet network developed by Nokia, which connects the cars to one another and the underlying infrastructure.

In recent years, Nokia has emerged as a leader in the connected cars space, exploring how 5G networks can be incorporated into autonomous vehicles and helping develop the infrastructure needed to test the technology.

Along with the funding from fellow tech park telecom giants, Nokia’s contribution to Area X.O will help further strengthen the city’s ability to create and develop autonomous vehicles, said Invest Ottawa president Michael Tremblay.

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