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A Computer On Wheels: Self-driving Cars Are Inevitable

Posted June 11, 2017 12:00 AM by ASME Job Board + Career Center
Pathfinder Tags: asme membership careers jobs

One thing becomes clear while browsing through Recode for the latest independent tech news, reviews and analysis: self-driving cars are inevitable. The shared belief in Silicon Valley, Detroit, Germany and Japan is that self-driving cars are the future. When self-driving cars arrive en masse, they will transform transportation and industries attached to the car.

This trend created an interesting cooperation between classic auto makers (such as Daimler, Audi and BMW), automotive suppliers, and high tech giants like Google, Apple and Tesla. However there are a small army of lesser known companies involved as well — the manufacturers, suppliers and startups building the hardware and software that equip vehicles with autonomous features. Mechanical engineers already know that being on the supply side of the auto industry provides excellent opportunities. These emerging, sometimes lesser known and smaller players offer additional venues for newly created engineering jobs.

A self-driving car basically has three components to it: the body, the eyes and the brain. Engineers are needed in a lot of different disciplines, from computer, software and optics, to sensor technology, chips, and much more to produce the body, eyes and brain of self-driving cars.

The body – a computer on wheels – is made by Google and an array of partners such as Roush, a boutique automotive supplier based in Michigan, assembled the car’s exterior. A handful of German specialists like Continental, Bosch, Frimo and ZFLS make components like powertrain, brakes and steering wheels.

The eyes – a self-driving car needs to see. There are two different chains of thought here. The best option may be LIDAR, a remote sensing technology that uses lasers to map out surroundings. A slightly cheaper alternative to LIDAR is the use of high-tech cameras.

The brain – Once a car has the parts to drive alone and see, it still needs a vast amount of processing power. This is where the chipmakers come in. Qualcomm and Samsung, are moving into the car industry, providing the graphical interfaces behind the advanced vision systems requisite for autonomous driving. Being the “brains” of self-driving cars leans on a form of artificial intelligence called deep learning, which trains computers to process reams of visual data.

Such groundbreaking engineering jobs are interesting, diverse, and sometimes hard to get, but they should not be hard to find.

Specializing in mechanical engineering jobs, the ASME Job Board + Career Center offers powerful, intelligent search tools for job seekers, including job alerts. For employers, the job board features programmatic distribution to over a dozen sites and major aggregators. Plus, auto-matching technology and social media channels enable proactive outreach to passive candidates. Additional partner sites are utilized that reach a diverse audience to help meet EEOC or OFCCP guidelines.

Search for automotive and thousands of other engineering jobs right here on the ASME Job Board + Career Center.

Post your resume today and get matched with high-caliber engineering firms nationwide.


Editor's note: This is a sponsored blog post from ASME Membership.

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Re: A Computer On Wheels: Self-driving Cars Are Inevitable

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