Thursday 17th October 2019

Cool IoT Use Cases: Scania AXL truck unveils the driverless future of mining

Published on October 1st, 2019

Market overview

As different industries look to streamline transport assignments and make them more sustainable, self-driving vehicles are increasingly being considered. Mines and large closed construction sites are examples of environments that are favourable for self-driving pilots since these locations are well-controlled.

The problem

Scania has already developed a number of self-driving trucks that are currently in service across several customer operations, but they’ve always included a cabin just in case a human driver needs to take over.  The company wanted to evaluate the performance of a truck controlled solely by an external logistics system that tells it where to go and how to behave.

The players

No third party was involved.  A group of Scania experts in different fields teamed up and developed this driverless truck.

The solution

The AXL is just a concept truck for now, although Scania says it doesn’t rely on any technologies that aren’t available today. It’s powered by biofuel, and uses cameras, radars, laser beams, GPS and LiDAR to sense the world around it. The autonomous operations are facilitated by a logistics system that tells the vehicle how it should perform. There’s a white light bar wrapped around the vehicle that shows where the truck has detected people or objects to avoid, giving people some degree of comfort that the machine has seen them and won’t be rolling over the top of them.

Business benefits

  • Without a cabin there’s extra space for cargo
  • No just-in-case cabin makes it cheaper to produce

The author is freelance technology writer, Bob Emmerson

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