Just before Christmas 2017, they had reason to celebrate: The team presented the “Sound.AI” prototype at the final round of the competition. The system detects signals issued by sirens from approaching police, fire or emergency medical service vehicles (“siren detection”). Using a display screen, “Sound.AI" informs the driver which direction the emergency vehicle is coming from and suggests what to do. If it comes from behind, it recommends the driver to pull over to the right, or – on freeways – to form an emergency lane. However, “Sound.AI” can do more than just detect sirens, it is also suitable for other purposes. ZF has decided to develop the MVP in a corporate start-up up to a production-ready stage – with ZF contributions from the Electronic Interfaces Business Unit, Advanced Engineering and Digitalization. There have been first talks with automotive manufacturers.
For ZF, "Sound.AI" is also a successful example of a different approach to working in the company. This start-up culture allows technical modifications to result in specific market opportunities more quickly.