Nvidia has revealed a powerful new SoC called Orin. The fruit of four years of research, development and investment, Orin packs Nvidia's next generation GPU architecture alongside Arm Hercules CPU cores in a 17 billion transistor SoC. The result sounds impressive; an Orin SoC is approx 7x faster that the Nvidia Xavier SoC, and can deliver 200TOPS.
The initial plan for Orin is that it will form an essential part of Nvidia's Drive AGX Orin, a highly advanced software-defined platform for autonomous vehicles and robots. Orin is highly suited to the tasks that are central to these automatons as it can adeptly multitask traditional apps as well as deep neural networks.
In Nvidia's development tests Drive AGX Orin could scale from a Level 2 to full self-driving Level 5 vehicle. Like Xavier it is programmable through open CUDA and TensorRT APIs and libraries.
CEO Jensen Huang said that Nvidia Drive AGX Orin addresses what he thinks might be "society's greatest computing challenge," - creating safe autonomous vehicles. Orin will help vehicle makers meet this incredibly complex challenge due to it being a scalable, programmable, software-defined AI platform, asserted Huang. Importantly the Orin SoC based system can meet systematic safety standards such as ISO 26262 ASIL-D.
Nvidia reckons vehicles packing its Drive AGX Orin system will deliver a significant step forward in autonomous driving tech for its customers. Expect vehicles featuring Nvidia Drive AGX Orin to start to become available from 2022.
Before we get too excited by Nvidia's PR, earlier this year analyst James Wang from ARKInvest noted that, even with Orin in production, Nvidia is still years behind Tesla in L5 driving computers. Today's news and official Nvidia Drive AGX Orin unveiling don't appear to change that.