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French auto parts maker teams up with Baidu's Apollo

French auto parts maker Valeo announced on Wednesday that the company has entered into strategic cooperation with Baidu on its open autonomous driving platform called Apollo.

French auto parts maker Valeo announced on Wednesday that the company has entered into strategic cooperation with Baidu on its open autonomous driving platform Apollo.

"This partnership, which is in line with our open innovation approach, demonstrates Valeo’s ambitious vision for the development of autonomous vehicles," a statement provided by Valeo said.

By joining Baidu's autonomous driving platform Apollo, Valeo said it will contribute its expertise in sensors. The company said it has a comprehensive product range of sensors including cameras, radar, ultrasonic sensors and laser scanners.

The auto parts maker said it will also contribute its skills in sensor cleaning systems, which are key to optimal sensor functioning, connectivity between autonomous vehicles, and control and optimization of air quality inside the vehicle.

Through cooperation with Baidu, Valeo said it will benefit in a number of areas, including software, hardware and data tools. These areas will consist of operating systems, high-precision positioning and high definition mapping services, simulation engines and cloud algorithms.

Launched in April 2017, Baidu's Apollo is an open platform which aims to accelerate the development, testing and deployment of autonomous vehicles through a collaborative approach. It also provides a technical solution to support the major features and functions of an autonomous vehicle.

In July last year, Baidu announced that 15 car manufacturers joined the platform to further accelerate the development of autonomous driving in China. The first batch of 15 partners include major automobile manufacturers like Chery Automobile, Daimler, FAW Group Corporation, Ford, Changan Automobile Group and Great Wall Motors.

Auto parts makers such as Continental and Bosch also joined Baidu's Apollo platform. Baidu said that the Apollo platform belongs to all car manufacturers and auto parts makers involved.

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