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Ford to Open Silicon Valley Research Lab

Driver interior dashboard (Ford Motor Co.)

(Ford Motor Co.)

Automobile maker Ford Motor Company says it will open a new research facility during the first quarter of 2012 located in the Silicon Valley region of California near San Francisco. The lab will be part of Ford’s Research and Innovation division, according to chief technical officer Paul Mascarenas who made the announcement in a statement today.

The lab is expected to encourage independent technology projects and identify new research investments and partners located on the west coast. Ford plans to link the lab with its Advanced Design Studio in Irvine, California and technology partner Microsoft Corp. in Redmond, Washington.

Research conducted at the lab is expected to focus on Ford’s interest in personal mobility technologies and sensors in vehicles to improve the driving experience for Ford customers. The lab is also expected to further develop Ford’s OpenXC platform, a collection of open source equipment and software applications using the Android operation system. The first OpenXC beta developer kits will be shipped this month to participating universities including MIT, University of Michigan, and Stanford.

The company did not disclose anticipated staffing levels in the lab. The new lab’s employees, says Ford, will be recruited both locally and rotated-in from the company’s global employees.

Read more: Algorithm Predicts Auto Traffic Intersection Violators

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