Heavy Duty Autonomous Mobility

| Transport

The Gen 2 Rigid Large electric freight vehicle has undergone public road testing

Driverless heavy goods transport enters completes pilot testing phase at GE facility and public roads in Tennessee

Freight mobility technology company Einride has successfully completed a public road pilot test of its autonomous, electric vehicle, in Selmer, Tennessee. After receiving the first US approval for operations of this new type of vehicle from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) earlier this year, Einride completed this test by operating a fully autonomous, electric vehicle without a safety driver on board on public roads. The pilot, in partnership with GE Appliances, took place over the duration of two weeks as the vehicle supported real-time workflows and transported finished goods from GE’s facilities.

Working in close partnership with state and county officials and GE staff, the Einride autonomous vehicle conducted the safe movement of goods between GE’s manufacturing facility and its warehouse. Einride also partnered with Ericsson, who provided a private connectivity network for seamless vehicle functionality and to enable an operator to remotely monitor the vehicle. The GE A facility was chosen as the pilot launch site due to the nature of the environment for safe testing of operations while meeting the real demand for movement of goods.

Harry Chase, Senior Director of Central Materials for GE Appliances says, “Working with Einride on this pilot on public roads in Tennessee helped us better envision and understand what we need to do differently to be at the forefront of autonomous and EV implementation. At GE Appliances, we believe you need to continuously experiment with new technology in order to learn.”

Einride has been working with GE on this project since October 2021. Since then, GE has doubled its connected electric fleet and is making use of Einride’s intelligent freight mobility platform, Einride Saga, to reduce emissions throughout its supply chains.

Part of a larger network

The autonomous vehicle used in the pilot test phase is just one of a larger integrated suite of technology that Einride is able to offer for freight logistics, including dedicated charging stations and vehicles at various stages of autonomy.

Einride says its charging stations will serve as the backbone of freight mobility grids, easily and reliably charging electric trucks by being placed at strategic on-road locations that are accessible to fleets. Already operating in Sweden, the company is constructing the first stations in the USA at the Port of LA, destined to be able to serve up to 200 vehicles.

According to Linnéa Kornehed Falck, CMO, Deputy CEO and Founder at Einride, the support for electric vehicles through charging stations and other services makes the technology more accessible to freight operators.

“Right now, making the transition to electric is vital and needs to be made easy and efficient,” says Falck.

Also, the latest model of the Gen 2 Rigid Large autonomous vehicle has been developed based on key logistics requirements. On this basis, it was designed with a larger cargo hold, updated optics form sensors, updated maximum speed and night vision capabilities – ultimately allowing for additional deployment cases. The vehicle is set to be deployed at customer sites starting in 2023.

Jonathan Newell
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