Back in 2014, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) boss Tim Cook approved an ambitious project to make an Apple-branded, electric self-driving car that would take on Tesla in the automotive world.
The project, codenamed “Titan,” has been moving in fits and starts ever since. Ultimately, nothing tangible has been produced for either consumers or investors, and the so-called Apple Car has had zero to minimal impact on Apple’s stock price.
Apple stock has been rising in recent days on reports that Apple is moving forward with project Titan, and targeting to produce a self-driving electric Apple Car by 2024.
This is a sign of the times.
Apple is not at the forefront of the self-driving revolution. If anything, the company is miles behind the likes of Alphabet/Waymo, Uber/Aurora, Amazon/Zoox, and many others.
Yet, despite being far behind, Apple is clearly committed to throwing the kitchen sink – and by that, I mean the company’s $200 billion cash hoard – at solving the self-driving problem.
Because it’s worth it.
Self-driving technology is going to change the world. It’s going to fundamentally disrupt everything we know about the $1.4 trillion automobile market. It’s going to destroy legacy auto titans, and create new ones in their place.
And it’s all going to happen soon…
Meaning the time to invest in the unprecedented self-driving revolution is now.
Today, we will tell you about a tiny AV tech company that Wall Street is completely sleeping on, and which has the potential to be one of the biggest winners in the self-driving revolution when all is said and done.
Leveraging Thermal Cameras to Enable Cars to See on Rainy Days
As longtime readers know, the key to unlocking self-driving capability is giving cars “vision,” or the ability to sense and react to their surroundings.
Of course, cars cannot do that themselves… so, we build sensors and put them on cars to give them that “vision.”
Visual cameras are one such sensor. LiDAR is another such sensor. So is RADAR.
All of these sensors are great. None of them are perfect. They all have shortcomings. And, because consumers won’t broadly adopt AVs until they are 100% safe, shortcomings simply won’t cut it in self-driving.
Thus, the self-driving car of the future will include all three of these sensors in its “autonomy stack.”
Another type of sensor that will likely be included in the autonomy stack are thermal cameras – and that’s great news for a tiny, $240 million AV technology company by the name of Foresight Autonomous (NASDAQ:FRSX).
One common shortcoming among visual cameras, LiDAR, and RADAR is that none perform all that great in adverse weather conditions. Rain, fog, sun glare, and snow can all cause these sensors to have “blurry vision” and make mistakes.
To address this common shortcoming, the industry has developed thermal cameras.
Thermal cameras cut through the weather noise and provide uninterrupted thermal data. That’s important, because the two most important objects on the road that you don’t want to hit – cars and humans – emit a ton of heat, regardless if it’s a sunny, rainy, or snowy day.
Thus, thermal cameras provide an important and often mission-critical information source for self-driving cars to sense other cars and humans on foggy mornings, snowy days, and rainy nights.
That’s why many self-driving experts see thermal cameras reaching ubiquitous adoption in vehicle autonomy stacks.
Foresight Autonomous plays a critical role in developing these thermal cameras.
Specifically, Foresight Autonomous has developed a proprietary AV tech platform – dubbed QuadSight – which blends visible-light camera data with thermal camera data to create a complete, uninterrupted picture of a car’s surroundings.
The result? An exceptionally accurate obstacle detection system… with near zero false alerts… that detects any object, regardless of size, shape or material… and operates in even the harshest weather and lighting conditions.
It’s a great solution.
To be sure, many other companies are making thermal cameras and experimenting with similar tech. But Foresight is the only one that has a direct partnership with Flir (NASDAQ:FLIR) – the world’s largest thermal imaging company – in which the industry titan will actually help Foresight make these QaudSight systems.
This partnership is a huge vote of confidence from the industry’s most advanced player. It broadly underscores the idea that when it comes to thermal cameras and object detection technology, Foresight Autonomous is in a class of its own.
Let’s connect the dots.
Self-driving cars are coming soon. Thermal cameras have potential to reach ubiquity among self-driving cars. Foresight Autonomous is the highest quality player in the thermal camera/detection space.
The writing is on the wall. Foresight Autonomous’ QuadSight platform could potentially transform into a huge, mission-critical building block of the multi-trillion-dollar self-driving revolution.
And yet… the company has a market cap of just $240 million today.
That’s because the company hasn’t sold many QaudSight systems yet. But that could change. In a big way. Very soon. And when it does, this tiny company could turn into a multi-billion-dollar AV tech giant.
On the date of publication, Luke Lango did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.
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