Autonomy Institute, a US-based cooperative research consortium focused on advancing and accelerating autonomy and AI at the edge (where computation and data storage are brought closer to where they are needed), has announced plans to launch a Public Infrastructure Network Node (PINN) pilot at the Texas Military Department in Austin, Texas.
It says the pilot will serve as a program for developing autonomous solutions at the edge, with plans to expand from Austin to other major US cities and then globally. PINN is set to be the first unified open standard to incorporate 5G wireless, edge computing, radar, lidar, enhanced GPS and intelligent transportation systems (ITS) as a single unified system.
According to Autonomy Institute, PINN represents a breakthrough in digital infrastructure, solving the current challenge of delivering low-latency computing and sensors at the edge while avoiding unsightly urban infrastructure sprawl. Connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV) in particular, and many other smart city applications, require sub-10 millisecond latencies and high bandwidths to operate safely. PINNs filled with sensors and communication and edge computing equipment will be placed 305m away from each other and will look similar to street lights.
“Investment in 21st century intelligent and autonomous infrastructure is among the highest priorities for stimulating economic expansion, national security and job growth. Edge computing, 5G wireless, intelligent transportation systems, resilient alternative positioning, navigation timing (APNT) and resilient electrical grids will drive the largest infrastructure buildout in our nation’s history. Digital edge will drive the world economy,” said Jeffrey DeCoux, chairman and fellow at Autonomy Institute.
PINN is seen as the critical element required to advance intelligent and autonomous solutions for city resilience, and Autonomy Institute says its goal is to have tens of thousands of PINNs deployed by mid-2022.
The Institute is working with partners EDJX, which delivers distributed cloud services at the edge, and Atrius Industries, which is developing intelligent and autonomous applications. The two companies are collaborating to develop edge-enabled IoT software and data solutions on the EDJX platform, to be installed on a plurality of interconnected PINNs consistent with the strategic direction of the Texas Military Department for the pilot launch. Autonomy Institute, Atrius and EDJX are building out a priority sequence of city-by-city rollouts, with the first units scheduled to come online in Q2 2021.