The Swedish company Einride, which already operates large fleets of electric trucks in Europe and the USA, has been testing autonomous trucks on US roads since June 2022. Other manufacturers have also been working on a solution for a long time. Among others, Daimler Truck works closely with Waymo.
Autonomous e-trucks emit 92 % less CO2 than diesel trucks. In the future, these will soon be driving on autobahns in Germany.
Autonomous trucks from Einride
So far, there are no self-driving trucks on Germany’s roads. But that should change soon. A shortage of staff is also visible in the forwarding industry. Therefore, autonomous e-trucks are very welcome. Einride is building a charging network along the most important German routes in Hamburg and the Ruhr area. However, before such trucks can come, a smooth charging network must be available.
A change is needed
Einride ‘s smart operating system controls the trucks autonomously from A to B.
“We have the opportunity and the technology to bring about the biggest change in the freight industry since the invention of the internal combustion engine, and we look forward to making transport history together with local partners,” said Einride founder Robert Falck.
In addition to lower CO2 emissions, there are also no particulate matter and NOx emissions. Remote control or monitoring is also possible.
Other manufacturers, such as Daimler Truck, are testing in Texas
Waymo, a company developing technologies for autonomous vehicles, is continuing Google Group’s “Google Driverless Car” project. Waymo is testing autonomous trucks in Texas together with Daimler Truck. The self-driving trucks will be tested on public highways around Dallas, Texas, Phoenix, and Airzona. They are equipped with numerous sensors.
However, there are still some obstacles to be overcome. The numerous sensor systems require a lot of energy and further increase the weight of the truck.
Equipment for the autonomous trucks from Daimler
The braking and steering system is designed twice. First, multiple radars, lidar, and camera sensor packages will be available at once. Also included are two latest-generation lidar sensors and another laser for close range. The cameras can cover an area of up to one kilometer.
The aim is for the smart operating system to act at least as well, if not better than a real driver.
What are other problems there with self-driving trucks?
Development involves human life and a lot of money. There are problems with snowfall, for example. That’s why the trucks are only tested in the sunny states of the USA. These and other problem cases are to be resolved over the next five years. Currently, a human driver sits behind the wheel on every test drive.
The TESLA semi-truck shows that it can sometimes take a little longer with e-trucks and autonomous driving. This should have been on Germany’s roads as early as 2021 – but it is still not really in use – not even in the USA.
Read also: Nissan Sakura: Mini electric car for 12,000 euros
Leave a Reply