Built to bring artificial intelligence (AI) to nearly every aspect of the driving experience, autonomous machine processor pioneer Nvidia says its first Drive Xaviers are up and running. They are intended provide a technological path forward for the 320-plus companies and organizations working with Nvidia on autonomous vehicles.

CEO Jensen Huang revealed during his CES 2018 press event that the first samples of our Xavier processors, initially announced about a year before, were being delivered to customers that quarter.

Xavier powers the Drive software stack, now expanded to a trio of AI platforms covering nearly every aspect of next-generation automobiles. With more than 9 billion transistors, Xavier is said to be the most complex system on a chip ever created, representing the work of more than 2000 Nvidia engineers over a four-year period, and an investment of $2 billion in research and development. It's built around a custom 8-core CPU, a new 512-core Volta GPU, a new deep learning accelerator, new computer vision accelerators and new 8K HDR video processors. And with its unified architecture, all previous Drive software development carries over and runs. The end result is that Xavier delivers 30 trillion operations per second while consuming just 30 watts, making it 15 times more energy efficient than Nvidia's previous generation architecture.

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