Otto’s robot lorry delivers beer through town
SELF-DRIVING trucks have proven they’re able to drive closer together than their humancontrolled counterparts, and they have the potential to create big fuel savings, but there’s still one crucial test for the technology: can it deliver beer?
Otto, a subsidiary of Uber, has answered that question by delivering a shipment of Budweiser in Colorado. Loaded up with 51 744 cans of Budweiser, a Volvo kitted out with Otto’s selfdriving hardware made the trek from Fort Collins to Colorado Springs, via downtown Denver.
The truck used its onboard cameras, lidar and radar sensors to navigate the entirety of I-25 without any input from the supervising human driver.
The retrofitted self-driving hardware cost around $30 000 (R404 602), and can be fitted to any truck with an automatic gearbox. Otto is currently testing the software on a fleet of bigrigs in the Bay Area.
This is in line with what Otto promised earlier this year. Unlike the Mercedes Future Truck 2025, which looks to a day where drivers won’t be needed in the cabin, Otto’s system is designed to lighten the load during monotonous highway miles, before reverting back to a person when things get a bit trickier in town.
The shipment of Budweiser is the first to be delivered by a selfdriving truck, a fact celebrated by a small note on the bottom of all the cans in the shipment.
— New Atlas.
A Volvo kitted out with robot-makers Otto’s self-driving hardware being tested in the U.S.