At CES 2019, Continental exhibited how a driverless vehicle could be used to stage and deploy delivery robots, taking packages all the way to the consumer – even when they’re not able to physically receive them.
The seamless integration of a driverless vehicle – in this case, the Continental Urban Mobility Experience (CUbE) – and a delivery robot present a more effective and efficient distribution of goods. Driverless vehicles like the CUbE, Continental’s autonomous electrified development platform, are generally considered as a solution for urban “first or last mile” mobility. This type of vehicle – often referred to as a robo-taxi or pod – will be a part of the seamless mobility value chain. The purpose of these vehicles will be extended to goods delivery to further utilise the available transport capacity and reduce idle times.“With the help of robot delivery, Continental’s vision for seamless mobility can extend right to your doorstep. Our vision of cascaded robot delivery leverages a driverless vehicle to carry delivery robots, creating an efficient transport team,” Ralph Lauxmann, Head of Systems & Technology, Chassis & Safety division, Continental, said.
Automated goods delivery is forecasted to provide an answer for up to 80% of all business-to-consumer deliveries,
according to multiple research sources. Continental views automated goods delivery as an integral part of future urban mobility as an addition to conventional goods delivery. Driverless vehicles like the CUbE can carry one or multiple delivery robots and deploy them to handle the last yards of the goods and parcel delivery logistics chain. “Industrialising the automation of goods delivery requires reliable, robust, high-performing and best-cost technology – a mix perfectly reflected in the automotive equivalent of automation. It is this very profile of expertise that has made Continental one of the industry-leading suppliers of advanced driver assistance systems and vehicle automation,” Lauxmann said.
With existing delivery robots serving as a development platform, Continental is ready to transfer and scale automotive technology to meet robot manufacturers’ requirements. “The challenges to a delivery robot parallel what we already solve for in automated vehicles,” said Jeremy McClain, Director of Systems and Technology, Continental North America. “Plus, delivery robots will require technology that is just as advanced and robust as our automotive solutions.” With the ever-increasing popularity of online shopping and the growth of megacities, unique solutions for package delivery will be needed. Driverless vehicles combined with delivery robots could be the perfect answer.
Driverless vehicles will represent a very important element in the Smart Cities of the future. They are considered by many experts asa key element of future mobility concepts to solve the challenges of urbanisation. A driverless vehicle can be in use almost 24/7. Innovative city planners see driverless vehiclesas a valuable addition to public mass transport by eliminating the need for a privately owned car to get to the nearest point of access to other means of transport.
“There will be peaks in demand for driverless vehiclesduring the day. To make use of driverless vehiclesoutside those peak ‘rush’ hours is where robot-delivery comes in. “We see great potential in our automotive technology to support robotics companies in developing autonomous delivery robots as an additional use case for driverless vehicles” McClain said.
Bio-Hybrid GmbH, a company belonging to the Schaeffler Group, presented at CES 2019 the near-production Bio-Hybrid – a new, modern form of personal urban mobility and means of transportation. The variable and electrically-assisted vehicles were showcased in the Cargo and Passenger versions.
“As a pioneer, Schaeffler presented the ‘Bio-Hybrid’ product category as a vision for private transportation in urban areas in 2016. This vision is now turning into reality. At the end of 2017, we established Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid GmbH. As a spin-off, the fully owned subsidiary is able to operate with the flexibility of a startup and has the mission to develop the Bio-Hybrid to production level. The world premiere of the two near-production prototypes at CES marked the next step on the road to the planned market launch in 2020,” Prof. Peter Gutzmer, Deputy CEO and Chief Technology Officer of Schaeffler AG, said.
“A central aim is to prevent the impending total gridlock in big cities and to make them more pedestrian-focused and livable. This can only be achieved by de-conflicting traffic by means of new, intelligent vehicle concepts. An approach like this requires vehicles that in a connected and systemically shared environment attain high flexibility while minimising the need for space. This is exactly what the Bio-Hybrid offers,” Gerald Vollnhals, Project Manager at Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid GmbH, said.
Based on the concept unveiled in 2016, the Schaeffler startup continuously pursed the further development of the BioHybrid. The versions showcased at CES will be deployed in a test field in the middle of 2019. In addition to the drive system, for example, the operating concept and the design were completely revised for this purpose. Concurrently, Schaeffler established a ten-member team the size of which is to double in 2019.
Patrick Seidel, who is responsible for strategy and business development at Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid GmbH, said: “In the next major step, we will continue to drive our marketing, sales and industrialisation concept and are open to partnerships in this respect.”
The Cargo and Passenger versions share the same modular platform delivering high levels of comfort and maximum safety standards. Due to its 4 wheels, the concept offers exceptional driving stability. As a result of having a roof and a windshield, the vehicle can be used in any type of weather and thus in all seasons. It is hardly wider than a normal bicycle and can be operated on bicycle paths as well with zero emissions.
The passenger version offers a new form of personal and design-oriented urban mobility. It comfortably seats two people behind one another. The cargo version provides a variable solution for zero-emissions hauling of goods. The vehicle to be showcased in Las Vegas is a kind of “pick-up.” The modular body makes the Bio-Hybrid a veritable quickchange artist: refrigeration vehicle, coffee shop or locked stowage compartment – anything is possible. In terms of cargo volume and payload, the Cargo version is perfectly prepared to handle hauling requirements in urban areas and provides an alternative within the future mobility mix.
Hero Electronix has announced its entry into the consumer technology space with a series of AI-powered, connected devices. The team at Hero Electronix believes that a massive revolution is coming as smart devices proliferate driven by technology trends like ubiquitous connectivity, cloud computing, artificial intelligence and low-cost sensors. Existing products ranging from cameras to audio speakers are getting smarter and a whole new range of devices emerging (i.e. dash cam, child trackers) that can make our lives more convenient, safer and entertaining.
Taking advantage of these technologies, Hero Electronix plans to launch more than 10 intelligent products across Home Automaton, Automotive, Health and Entertainment domains in the next 5 years. Each of these devices is being architected ground up to solve specific needs of Indian consumers and to work in Indian environments and family set-ups. To develop these solutions, HEPL has made massive R&D investments over the course of past 24 months and partnered with global technology giants like Amazon and Qualcomm. The first of these products was previewed at the CES 2019. This is a breakthrough product designed to be the centerpiece of security, entertainment and automation needs of your home. At its heart, it’s a HD camera with advanced artificial intelligence that allows you to remotely monitor and protect your home. Features like facial recognition and 2-way audio help you to stay connected with loved ones. Night vision and motion (unknown person detection) alerts help guard against potential incidents. It has Alexa and home hub built-in, so you can use your voice to play music, control smart home devices, access skills and more- hands free. Moreover, this product is powered by the Qualcomm Vision Intelligence 100 Platform, based on the APQ8053 System-On-Chip (SoC). The Qualcomm Vision Intelligence platform includes a highly optimised custom CPU and GPU that is designed to provide high compute capability at low-power for on-device machine learning including integrated connectivity and support for display and audio features. Finally, it has a high-quality speaker that can fill your home with high fidelity sound. This made-in-India device is among the very few innovations from India to be presented at CES 2019, which speaks to its capabilities and uniqueness. Planning for the long-term, Hero Electronix has invested in building the core technology components in-house. The complete technology stack – hardware, cloud software, device software, app – has been architected by its Engineers over a period of 2 years and built in collaboration with leading global partners. Additionally, Hero Electronix has made significant investments in AI (specifically image processing), which have led to significant breakthroughs in terms of product feature/functionality.
Ujjwal Munjal, Founder Director, Hero Electronix said, “We at Hero Electronix feel proud to have our products showcased at CES 2019, we intend on launching a series of AI-Powered connected products that are designed and built grounds up in India for India and the world. Each of these intelligent consumer devices is unique, innovative and first of its kind in many aspects, best in class even on a global stage.” Nikhil Rajpal, CEO, Hero Electronix said, “We believe we have a unique opportunity available to us at this point. There is a major revolution coming where AI powered connected devices can solve massive real-world problems. While we are addressing the home automation space with our first range of products in the near term, we will soon come out with products targeted at the automotive, health and fitness space.”
CES 2019 saw an array of production-ready ZF technologies that will help to make fully autonomous driving in public traffic a reality. The company made the world premiere of ZF ProAI RoboThink, the most powerful AI-capable supercomputer in the mobility industry. This
automotive-grade system, combined with ZF’s fully developed sensor suite, allows real-time analysis of and reaction to virtually any kind of complex traffic situations, making autonomous mobility-as-a-service possible. Fully networked system solutions based on the ZF Cloud link the vehicle to the IoT, as well as to customer applications such as payment systems or ride-hailing services. This comprehensive offering was on display at CES 2019 in the form of a fully operational robo-taxi, highlighting what is now feasible thanks to ZF.
“With its unique concept in terms of flexibility, modularity and scalability, this outstanding product accelerates the development of driverless vehicles as well as their ability to autonomously move people and goods,” Wolf-Henning Scheider, CEO of ZF Friedrichshafen AG, said.
A performance of up to 600 trillion calculation operations per second (600 teraOPS) puts the ZF ProAI RoboThink in the pole position for automotive-grade central control units. This level of computing power is designed to be capable of networking the stream of internal and external sensor data with carto-X communication and cloud-based data input in real time, providing a platform to help safely operate a Level4+ autonomous vehicle in virtually any kind of public traffic.
This is a precondition to support the future segment of autonomous ride-hailing services from areas with predefined routes like campuses or company grounds to the significantly more complex environment of public road traffic. In the wake of this developing trend, ZF also premiered its own software stack for new mobility concepts at the CES. This stack together with the latest ZF Pro AI and the company’s comprehensive sensor set represent a fully integrated system for driverless vehicles that can be easily adopted by the new players in the field of mobility services.
Visteon Corporation, a leading global supplier of automotive cockpit solutions, offered a glimpse into the smart, learning digital cockpit of the future at CES 2019. Visteon showcased advanced technologies that can power the in-vehicle user experience of the automotive cockpit in the emerging era of more automated driving. Visteon’s integrated solutions are aimed at improving safety on the road while enabling seamless access to information – from personal devices, the vehicle and the cloud – using the latest innovations in technology.
Key highlights of this new cockpit electronics architecture include: A high-powered cockpit domain controller that integrates the instrument cluster; infotainment and other cockpit functions into a single ECU with advanced graphics, over-the-air software updates, and state-of-the-art cyber security; large high-resolution displays that are curved and non-rectangular to deliver an enhanced viewing experience without limiting interior panel design; a scalable autonomous domain controller for Level 2 and higher automated driving that is integrated with the cockpit domain controller for seamless interaction with the driver; a machine learningbased voice recognition and text-to-speech solution for a natural language; conversational smart assistant In-cabin driver and other occupant detection and identification technology, also based on machine learning for improved safety functionality.
“The shift toward electric cars and improved automated driving technology is an opportunity to rethink the cockpit in terms of how drivers and passengers interact with the vehicle and their surroundings. As vehicles become more automated, there is a need for fresh approaches to the human-machine interface in the cockpit – to ensure control can shift safely and seamlessly between the driver and the vehicle, and to keep occupants informed, engaged and entertained. “In the era of increased automated driving, the cockpit will become a smart, learning, mobile assistant,” Visteon President and CEO Sachin Lawande, said.
Visteon’s industry-leading digital cockpit solutions offer automakers a complete suite of technologies to upgrade the user experience of their vehicles. At CES, Visteon demonstrated the integration between the SmartCore cockpit domain controller and the scalable DriveCore autonomous driving controller, which combine to create a seamless HMI between the driver and the vehicle. This interface manages the experience of drivers and passengers as the vehicle seamlessly takes control from the driver or gives it back.
At CES 2019, Bosch presented its connected mobility of the future. With the concept shuttle vehicle it developed inhouse, Bosch is celebrating a world first at CES. In this vehicle, the company is presenting solutions for the automation, connectivity, and electrification of vehicles, and is giving
visitors the chance to experience at first hand a new kind of mobility: driverless shuttles, which will soon be a feature on the streets of the world’s cities. “This will pay into our vision of mobility that is as emissionsfree, accident-free, and stress-free as possible,” says Dr Markus Heyn, Board of management member, Bosch. For shuttle-based mobility such as this, Bosch will be supplying not only components and systems, but also a complete range of mobility services, such as reservation, sharing, and connectivity platforms, as well as parking and recharging services. Bosch believes that such connected services are essential for the shuttle-based mobility of the future. The forecast market volume for these services is also high: while it was 47 billion euros in 2017, it is estimated that it will be as much as 140 billion euros by 2022 (source: PwC). Bosch also wants to have a share in this, and aims for significant doubledigit growth with the solutions it offers. For Heyn, there is no doubt: “In the future, every vehicle on the road will make use of Bosch digital services. We will consolidate them into a smart, seamlessly connected ecosystem.”
Faurecia, which has been developing a comprehensive technology offer to enhance people’s mobility experiences, addresses two key domains: Cockpit of the Future for a safer, more comfortable and personalised experience, and Sustainable Mobility for cleaner and more environmentally-responsible transportation.
Faurecia showcased how the onboard intelligence and integrated design of the Cockpit of the Future provides a more versatile, connected and predictive environment that allows people to make the most of their time onboard. Faurecia also demonstrated key technologies to accelerate the development of fuel-cell powered vehicles, a promising future zero-emissions mobility solution. Connected and increasingly autonomous vehicles will become more complex, with a wide array of hardware, software and services to connect and control. Faurecia’s Cockpit Intelligence Platform (CIP), developed in partnership with Accenture, is an electronics system that manages all the interior functions of the Cockpit for an intuitive interaction between occupants and the vehicle.
Using artificial intelligence, over time the CIP learns from information collected from cameras and sensors to predict and personalise the onboard experience. This ranges from automatically recognising a driver and adjusting seating and lighting preferences, creating individual sound bubbles, simplifying interactions via voice, gesture or touch, to proposing multi-sensorial wellness programmes that relax or revitalise occupants. Faurecia’s CIP is connected to the cloud, enabling the system to securely store and access on and offline data to ensure a continuity between home, office and in-vehicle services through edge computing.
Faurecia has taken a services-oriented approach. The CIP is built on an open source Android platform to support the development and integration of new apps and services. In addition to being highly connected, it’s also scalable and upgradable. This allows automakers to choose which functionalities to integrate in each category of vehicle, as well as upgrade over the air new features to keep vehicles state of the art over their lifetime. Faurecia’s CIP features a number of key specialist technologies, including the software and electronic audio, infotainment and connectivity services of Parrot Faurecia Automotive and Faurecia Coagent Electronics.