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The Technical Specification: Connected Autonomous Vehicle (MPAI-CAV) – Architecture specifies the architecture of a Connected Autonomous Vehicle, i.e., a physical system that:

  1. Converses with humans by understanding their utterances, e.g., a request to be taken to a destination.
  2. Acquires information with a variety of sensors on the physical environment where it is located or traverses like the one depicted in Figure 1.
  3. Plans a Route enabling the CAV to reach the requested destination.
  4. Autonomously reaches the destination by:
    • Moving in the physical environment.
    • Building Digital Representations of the Environment.
    • Exchanging elements of such Representations with other CAVs and CAV-aware entities.
    • Making decisions about how to execute the Route.
    • Acting on the CAV motion actuation to implement the decisions.

Figure 1 – An environment of CAV operation


Figure 2 depicts the four Subsystems composing the MPAI-CAV Architecture. The arrows refer to the exchange of information between Subsystems and other CAVs or CAV-aware systems.

  1. Human-CAV Interaction (HCI).
  2. Environment Sensing Subsystem (ESS),
  3. Autonomous Motion Subsystem (AMS).
  4. Motion Actuation Subsystem (MAS).

This Technical Specification assumes that each Subsystem in implemented as an AI Workflow (AIW) as described in Annex 4 – Chapter 1. An AI Workflow is a combination of AI Modules (AIM) that are executed in the AI Framework (AIF).


Chapters 6-0-8-9 specify the four Subsystems. Each Chapter provides the following:

  1. The Function of the Subsystem (AI Workflow).
  2. The input/output data of the Subsystem.
  3. The topology of the Components (AI Modules) of the Subsystem.
  4. For each AI Module of the Subsystem:
    • The Function.
    • The input/output Data.


It is important to highlight the fact that:

  1. The input/output data have known semantics because CAVs should be explainable.
  2. Components can be merged into one if the external interfaces are preserved. Merged Components may have reduced Explainability.
  3. This specification specifies how certain CAV functions can be achieved. It does not mandate the support of any of these functions.


An additional Chapter includes the elements of the so-called Communication Device that enables a CAV to communicate with other CAVs.


This Technical Report has been developed by the Connected Autonomous Vehicle group of the Requirements Standing Committee. MPAI intends to publish a Technical Specification where the Functional Requirements of the I/O Data to/from the AIWs (Subsystems) and AIM and Data Formats are specified. Further Technical Specifications may follow.

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