General Motors (GM) Files Blockchain-Based Map Network Patent for Autonomous Vehicles

  • General Motors (GM) plans to build a self-updating navigation system on blockchain to allow use across “specific roads” on autonomous vehicles.

In a newly published filing to the U.S Patent & Trademark Office on April 2, GM has acquired a patent on its “Decentralized Distributed Map Using Blockchain” allowing autonomous cars to continuously collect data on specific routes based on information received from the one or more sensors. The data collected is then mapped on to a blockchain network allowing several users to contribute on the map simultaneously.

The application was filed back in October 2018, entailing a slew of features to offer a solution to the huge costs associated with keeping data dynamic. General Motors is now employing blockchain to distribute the process across several vehicles on specific routes across the world collecting data on its surroundings in real-time. Once data is collected, it’s compared to the existing maps and any differences are recorded on a blockchain.

At the time of filing, a GM representative was quoted:

“It is desirable to provide locations information and densities of vehicles in regions in an online blockchain ledger for interoperable information sharing between vehicles of participants for use in navigating routes.”

The confirmation process

The system will verify the new addition (difference) similarly to how financial transactions on blockchains are verified. Any car that records a similar difference offers confirmation and after a number of these “nodes” confirm, this “candidate transaction” is added to the chain.

General Motors' new platform looks set to revolutionize the automated vehicles industry with the new platform, which analysts predict will be used for its luxury line of vehicles.

In April 2019, the company in conjunction with BMW hailed blockchain-based innovations as the solution to sharing self-driving car data. Notwithstanding, GM funded blockchain startup, Spring Labs over $23 million aiming to create a platform that secures and defends blockchain protocols.

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