The Toyota Research Institute (TRI) has unveiled its newest autonomous test vehicle, Platform 2.1, featuring Luminar's sensing technology.

"We moved swiftly and early to adopt the Luminar platform into our fleet, and as a result we're rapidly advancing our program," said James Kuffner, the institute's chief technology officer.

"The level of data fidelity and range is unlike anything we have seen and is essential to be able to develop and deliver the most advanced automated driving systems."

Since coming out of 'stealth' last April, Luminar said, it has scaled up its partnerships with a "select few" companies – TRI being the first to deeply integrate the new sensing platform.

"We're proud to enable the most advanced and rapidly evolving autonomous vehicle programmes," said Luminar founder and CEO, Austin Russell.

"As the group defining the future of vehicle autonomy for the largest auto manufacturer in the world, TRI has the greatest opportunity to lead the charge in deploying life saving, self driving technology at scale. By equipping vehicles with the best quality 3D data, better than human perception can finally become a reality – charting the fastest, safest course for full autonomy."

Luminar's Lidar delivers more than an order of magnitude greater resolution than current sensors and the ability to see dark objects, such as a tyre (10% reflectivity) at over 200m, compared to less than 40m. The sensor is also the first to allow resolution to be concentrated where it's needed most, in real time, enabling the car to clearly see and recognise cars, people, and objects, even at distance.

Luminar was founded five years ago and began development of a new Lidar architecture, becoming the only platform to achieve the necessary sensor requirements to ultimately deliver safer than human autonomous vehicles. To get there, the company took a new approach by building all major components in its system from the ground up: lasers, receivers, scanning mechanisms and processing electronics. The radical architecture requires only a single laser, single receiver, and ultra fast scanner to collect millions of points of information in the environment from just a fraction of the components used in today's Lidar systems.