Tech Updates

Uber ATG upgrades its self reliant truck check fleet with new tech

Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group has a new version of its trying out transport truck for self-sufficient tech. The new model capabilities and up to date era stack, consisting of a sixty four-channel spinning LiDAR array, which is something never used previously on any of the previous Otto’s check vehicles.

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The Uber ATG truck extensively drops all Otto branding, as you may see, considering the fact that Uber retired that call in May following an indicator dispute raised with the aid of Canada’s Otto Motors, and after the self-driving trucking business enterprise Uber received have become the impetus for a fit by Alphabet’s Way contesting that Otto pros took confidential agency information when they departed Google.

Uber’s Advanced Technology Group has taken over ownership of the assignment, with Otto falling under its umbrella as of closing yr, and now the fans had been upgraded with a few factors of ATG Tech for the first time. But ATG trucks product supervisor Alden Woodrow instructed me the previous Otto group primarily based in San Francisco is still mainly the truck tech.


“Otto become primarily based in San Francisco, and so with the mixing, most of our engineering attempt remains based totally in San Francisco for the fans,” he stated. “But one of the fantastic things about being part of this large group is we have that crew in Pittsburgh that has a truly international-magnificence team and that has had several years’ head begin on growing comparable technology. So we work genuinely intently with the team in Pittsburgh.”

Woodrow also stated that in addition to close collaboration between the Pittsburgh and San Francisco groups, the new ATG office in Toronto beneath Raquel Urtasun will provide extra possibilities to assist in addition broaden their tech.

The new Uber ATG truck tech loadout also consists of upgraded additives and software throughout the car further to the new spinning LiDAR and is completely refreshed, with new hardware sensors and new software program components at some stage in. This updates the design that changed into used previously, inclusive of at some stage in Otto’s press-grabbing autonomous Budweiser freight shipment haul, which sooner or later earned a Guinness World Record for “the longest non-stop journey by a driverless and self-reliant semitrailer truck.”

Woodrow also says that this tech refresh also changed into now not made as an immediate result of the continuing Uber/Wayne felony fight. The LiDAR used in the new design is an off-the-shelf element (maximum likely an HDL-64E sourced by means of Velodyne, given the design and specs, although he wasn’t able to verify because of confidentiality agreements), rather than one advanced in-residence.

“It’s an off-the-shelf device from a third-party, so it clearly breaks free some of the things at trouble within the Waymon healthy about us developing our personal LiDAR, it’s a very separate product,” Woodrow said. “This is completely independent of that; it’s continually been part of the plan to integrate the Otto technology with the ATG era. The Otto stack genuinely didn’t use sixty four-channel LiDAR in any respect.”

Otto’s layout never used LiDAR of this kind in its tech stack (a spinning, 64-channel module), Woodrow says, and the addition of its talents ought to assist appreciably with information to be had on the self-reliant riding machine.

“That without a doubt notably improves what records the truck is able to seize approximately the world, so it builds a very first rate factor cloud of its environment,” he stated. “So that truly helps the software device make higher decisions approximately what’s accessible in the international and make higher decisions.”

This new truck may be spotted in checking out in SF and on neighboring highways, Woodrow says. I asked him how the California DMV feels approximately this, given a few in advance reports that the licensing frame changed into reportedly searching into its preceding self-reliant truck checks. Woodrow instructed me that they virtually have a near relationship with the DMV and that representatives have been simply in recently to get an replace on their development.

He also said he believes that their position is now that they recollect the ATG vehicles Level 2 cars, like Tesla vehicles geared up with Autopilot, meaning they don’t require self-sustaining licensing especially. Every truck has a skilled motive force onboard equipped to take control, Woodrow cited. I reached out to the DMV to confirm, but they didn’t right away respond to my request for remark.

Uber ATG has also bought a number of-of new vehicles geared up with its new generation and says it’s likely more San Franciscans will see the automobiles out and approximately at the roads as an end result. He additionally said we are able to assume to look more demonstration runs like the Budweiser delivery in the future, although he introduced it’s a little too soon to talk about specifics simply but.

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