Start-ups to test ‘mobility solutions’ at Mcity

Keith Laing
Detroit News Washington Bureau

Five start-up companies have been selected to test “mobility solutions” at the University of Michigan’s TechLab at Mcity, the university announced Tuesday.

The companies, described as “emerging mobility companies,” are planning to use the facility “to pilot their connected and automated vehicle technologies,” the university said.

“We are leveraging the world-class research and facilities at U-M to attract leading startups,” Jonathan Fay, who is the Dixon and Carol Doll executive director of the UM Center for Entrepreneurship, said in a statement. “Together we are developing the technological leaders of tomorrow.”

The university said its TechLab matches early-stage transportation technology companies with students who are interested in applying classroom learning to practical technology development. The companies that were selected to participate in the program for the fall are:

■Tome, of Detroit; which will focus on safe bicycle-to-vehicle (B2V) communication.

■CARMERA, of New York and Seattle, which provides real-time 3-D maps and navigation-critical data for autonomous vehicles.

■PolySync, of Portland, Oregon, which builds frameworks for building, testing and deploying safe driverless vehicle applications quickly.

■RightHook, of San Jose, which exposes self-driving cars to harsh conditions through simulation testing.

■Zendrive, of San Francisco, which uses smartphone sensors to identify driving behaviors and provide insights and coaching to boost driver safety.

“These startups are really pushing the pace of innovation, and we want to expose our students to that environment as much as we can,” Greg McGuire, TechLab instructor and Mcity lab director, said. “Our students will take these experiences with them as they move forward in creating their own mobility solutions and start their own companies.”

The university said several students have been offered internships and jobs with the companies that have participated in the TechLab since its inception in January 2016.

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Twitter: @Keith_Laing