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TuSimple expands self-driving routes


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The company will have 40 trucks in fully-autonomous operation by June.


TuSimple, a global self-driving truck company, will have 40 trucks in fully-autonomous operation by June, making the company one of the largest self-driving truck solutions company worldwide.


The company currently has 11 trucks in the U.S. and will up that number in response to growing commercial demand from 12 contracted customers, including Fortune 100 and large international companies.


The company now makes three to five fully-autonomous trips per day for customers on three different routes in Arizona. An additional route from Arizona to Texas will come online in early 2019. TuSimple is the only self-driving truck company running daily fully-autonomous commercial routes from depot-to-depot, which requires both highway and local street driving.


At CES 2019, TuSimple will display a Navistar International LT semi-truck (Booth SP5, South Plaza) in Las Vegas, from January 8 to 11, 2019 highlighting the company’s industry-leading self-driving (Level 4) perception system and showcasing what TuSimple trucks ‘see’ while driving autonomously.

TuSimple also announced it is working with Tier 1 suppliers, including Cummins Inc., to enable powertrain integration with its autonomous technologies. Cummins was instrumental in developing the industry standard interface between powertrains and autonomous systems. Cummins is bringing its nearly 100 years of technological innovation in engines, components and controls to partners like TuSimple and other technology companies to ensure seamless and safe integration in the efforts to bring autonomous vehicles to commercial markets.


“We are pleased to work with TuSimple and other companies across the globe to help bring autonomous vehicle technology to commercial markets,” said Morgan Andreae, Executive Director, Growth Office, Cummins Inc. “Cummins is a global powertrain leader with expertise in not only engines, but also controls and electronics and we are bringing this technical knowledge to develop a sophisticated interface that can allow powertrains and vehicles to integrate and operate efficiently, effectively and safely.”


“Exactly one year after debuting our prototype system at CES 2018, we’re now running up to five commercial trips a day in Arizona, expanding our fleet and moving quickly toward our goal of creating the first commercial self-driving truck,” said Dr. Xiaodi Hou, Founder, President and Chief Technology Officer, TuSimple. “We are making tremendous progress towards the commercialization of our technology and trucking ecosystem with key Tier 1 partners like Cummins. The viability and power of our autonomous truck solutions is being proven daily on highways and local streets.”


With the company’s camera-centric perception solution, TuSimple’s trucks have a vision range of 1,000 meters—farther and better-quality visibility than any other autonomous perception system today. Most driverless systems can only see optimum quality up to 150 meters ahead of the vehicle. The California Department of Motor Vehicles lists anything less than 300 meters to be low visibility and recommends that driver precautions be taken. TuSimple’s self-driving trucks can also see 360 degrees around for a pixel-level interpretation of the visible environment, enabling the vehicle to have three centimeter control precision at all times—rain or shine.


The trucking industry is currently facing a shortage of 50,000 drivers (which is expected to increase to 175,000 by the end of 2024) and is approaching a 100 percent turnover rate per year with an average driver age of 49 years old. According to a PwC study, autonomous trucking technologies will reduce annual operating costs for a traditional average long-haul truck by 28 percent in 2025. TuSimple is aiming to transform the $740-billion U.S. trucking industry by cutting costs, reducing carbon emissions and eradicating some of the challenges currently faced by operators. Today’s announcement is a significant step in the realization of TuSimple’s previous expansion announcements.

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