Ro­bot valets

A Hangzhou com­pany has fin­ished the de­sign and pro­duc­tion of a smart park­ing sys­tem com­plete with a ro­bot valet.

China Daily (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - By SHI XIAOFENG in Wuzhen, Zhe­jiang and SHI JING in Shang­hai Con­tact the writ­ers at shi­jing@chi­nadaily.com.cn and shixf@chi­nadaily.com.cn

There is now one more rea­son to be lousy at park­ing your car at the right lot: a ro­bot can do it bet­ter for you.

Hikvi­sion Dig­i­tal Tech­nol­ogy Co Ltd, a sup­plier of video sur­veil­lance prod­ucts based in Hangzhou, Zhe­jiang prov­ince, has fin­ished the de­sign and pro­duc­tion of a smart park­ing sys­tem com­plete with a ro­bot park­ing valet.

Hikvi­sion launched the sys­tem dur­ing the World In­ter­net Con­fer­ence on Tues­day.

The ro­bot valet can park a ve­hi­cle in less than two min­utes while the car owner stays to­tally hands-off.

This is how the sys­tem works:

First, the owner drives into the in­ter­ac­tive area of the smart car park where op­ti­cal signs and a mon­i­tor show the cur­rent park­ing sit­u­a­tion and as­sist the driver in park­ing the car pre­cisely on a rack.

Then he can get off the ve­hi­cle, walk to the nearby park en­trance, and get his park­ing num­ber us­ing a touch-screen or an app on his smart­phone. The smart park­ing sys­tem will con­firm with the car owner that the car is pow­ered off, the hand brake is on and no­body is in the car.

The num­ber gen­er­ated au­to­mat­i­cally will help the car owner to col­lect the car later.

The smart park­ing sys­tem de­ter­mines the best park­ing lot and the path to that for the ro­bot. The ro­bot park­ing valet then swings into ac­tion and drives the car out of the in­ter­ac­tive area and onto the se­lected park­ing lot.

At the time of col­lec­tion, the car owner needs to key in the num­ber gen­er­ated ear­lier on the touch-screen, which will di­rect the smart park­ing sys­tem to dis­patch the ro­bot valet to fetch the car to the in­ter­ac­tive area.

Ac­cord­ing to Hikvi­sion, a smart park­ing sys­tem can deal with 500 cars at a time. Use of park­ing lots avail­able can be in­creased by 40 per­cent by op­ti­miz­ing the en­tire area.

The smart park­ing sys­tem uses 5G tech­nol­ogy, or the in­ter­net of ve­hi­cles, first launched in Wuzhen by Cethik Group, par­ent of Hikvi­sion, ac­cord­ing to Wen Xi­hua, gen­eral man­ager of smart city busi­ness de­part­ment of the Cethik Re­search In­sti­tute.

Wen said the idea of a smart park­ing sys­tem evolved from com­put­er­ized lo­gis­tics of mod­ern ware­houses. The com­pany spent six months in the de­sign and de­vel­op­ment of the smart park­ing sys­tem, and in­te­grated the quick re­sponse or QR code tech­nol­ogy into it. The sys­tem is now ap­pli­ca­ble to both out­door and in­door car parks.

“A car park­ing lot is priced at around 200,000 yuan ($29,520) in cities such as Bei­jing and Shang­hai. By in­creas­ing the park­ing ef­fi­ciency, the cost can be brought down sub­stan­tially. By in­no­vat­ing tech­nol­ogy, the project brings real ben­e­fits to many city dwellers,” said Wen.

GAO ERQIANG / CHINA DAILY

A sec­tion of the smart park­ing sys­tem at Wuzhen, Zhe­jiang prov­ince.

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