China’s first autonomous commuter vehicle in pilot operation

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A Hachi Auto AV has become the first unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) to be deployed in residential communities in China. As a part of real-estate developer Seedland Group’s Smart Life System of new technological conveniences, two of the vehicles are providing a shuttle service to residents of the Boston Ivy community in Guangzhou.

Powered by lidar and vision technology, a multi-sensor fusion algorithm and 3D obstacle detection and speed estimation, the Seedland-developed, all-electric, four-passenger Hachi Auto vehicle can accurately move forward and backward, turn around in the operating environment and automatically calculate an avoidance path.

Its creators say it can also adapt to different weather conditions such as rain, fog and wind days. Positioning accuracy of 2-5cm keeps it from being affected by the GPS signal instability between community buildings. The sensor fusion algorithm is reportedly the result of over 100,000km of road testing, consisting of over 2,000 trips without human intervention.

Residents can view vehicle locations and select routes using a Hachi app. Seedland expects to roll out further vehicles in more communities across China.

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About Author

Based in Calgary, Canada, Graham covers automotive, technical, motorsport and business assignments for clients in Europe and North America. He previously spent 11 years as a writer and editor for international magazines published in the UK, including Autonomous Vehicle International, and sister publication, Automotive Testing Technology International.

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