UVeye raise $31m to expand AI-driven inspection system

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An Israeli technology start-up has raised an additional $31m to expand the deployment of its external inspection systems for the automotive industry.

UVeye inspection of Volvo S90 (Image: Volvo)

The latest investment in UVeye was led by Toyota Tsusho, Volvo Cars and W. R. Berkley Corporation with participation from partners including F.I.T. ventures.

UVeye’s technology lets vehicle manufacturers, logistic operators, retailers and car rental companies carry out automatic vehicle inspections utilising artificial intelligence purpose-built for vehicles.

“It’s all based on the deep-learning engine and computer vision image processing algorithms we developed in-house to solve a very simple but hard problem,” said David Oren, UVeye’s chief strategy officer. “We are automatically detecting whatever you can see with your eyes. We are enhancing all the manual inspection with an automatic, objective and very efficient system.”

UVeye’s drive-through systems can detect external and mechanical flaws and identify anomalies, modifications or foreign objects along the undercarriage and around the exterior of the vehicle. The scanning process completes within seconds and can be used throughout the entire lifecycle of the vehicle.

“Our cameras – our acquisition systems – take multiple images from around the object we are inspecting, then the deep learning engine kicks in and does the analysis, which is based on segmentation, classification and some other very unique algorithms…we developed in-house.” Oren explained during Fisita Plus, which was held in London on July 11.

As well as making an investment in the company, Volvo said it is also looking at using UVeye’s technology to conduct full exterior inspections of cars after they roll off production lines. To this end, a first pilot is likely to start later this year at Volvo’s manufacturing plant in Torslanda, Sweden. The technology could also be used during the various steps of the logistics flow and at retailers. For Toyota Tusho, UVeye will support distribution to used car centres.

“All the OEMS are switching and changing to provide more aftermarket services, so it’s actually a very good starting point to provide services and then grow with the OEMs towards the aftermarket,” said Oren. “Thanks to our flexibility we provide one platform that can actually serve the OEMs on the manufacturing lines, the logistics companies transporting vehicles, then the dealers in the aftermarket on one platform.”