Stories by Geoff Deane

Expert Voices

To avoid driving blind, AVs will have to clear blocked sensors

A Velodyne LiDAR sensor is mounted on a Ford Fusion hybrid
A Velodyne lidar sensor. Photo: David Becker/Getty Images

Inclement weather presents numerous challenges for AVs, including sensor obstructions caused by raindrops and ice — one reason U.S. developers most often test them in states with dry, sunny weather.

Why it matters: Obstructions from environmental conditions or physical damage to the sensor can impair an AV's navigation and decision-making, but developers are still learning how best to prevent and deal with them.