American 3D mapping technology firm Civil Maps has opened a European headquarters in Luxembourg where it plans to have four staff members before the end of the year, a figure which could double in 2020. The firm is working closely with a team from the University of Luxembourg’s Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT) working on autonomous vehicles.

Civil Maps was founded in 2013 to avoid train collisions caused by poor weather or human error. They took raw data on train locations to create high-definition maps, technology which was applied to autonomous vehicles two years later. They developed their trademarked high-definition 3D maps of city surroundings known as Fingerprint Base Map, which takes snippets of data collected from the smart sensors in self-driving cars and encodes it into 3D maps.

Luxembourg is part of a cross-border testbed for autonomous vehicle technology, along with France and Germany. The lab involves a 206-kilometre circuit between Schengen, Saarbrücken and Metz for testing 5G technology for autonomous driving under real-life conditions.

According to Luxinnovation, the growth of autonomous driving technology in Europe pushed the company to branch out in Luxembourg. Civil Maps has activities in India, China and the US.