Daimler Trucks and Torc Robotics expand road testing

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Daimler Trucks and Torc Robotics will expand testing of automated truck technology on new public routes, building on tests in Virginia.

The team completed initial mapping of additional routes in January, enabling them to collect data from real-world traffic scenarios beyond what can be learned from computer simulations and closed road courses.

Initial public road testing started in southwest Virginia last year, and Daimler’s Autonomous Technology Group will continue working in the state, adding new routes to the data.

Dr Peter Vaughan Schmidt, head of Autonomous Technology Group at Daimler Trucks, said, “By expanding our testing to new routes in the USA we are able to learn more, work with various partners and apply our advanced testing methods to new environments. These learnings help us to achieve our goal of safe and reliable highly automated driving, delivering value to our customers and society.”

Daimler and Torc are using their experience to test and deploy Level 4 autonomous trucks within a decade.

Blacksburg, Virginia-based Torc became part of the Autonomous Technology Group in August 2019 following Daimler Trucks’ investment in the company.

Torc’s expertise in self-driving software development has been combined with Daimler’s experience in delivering trucks.

Its Level 4 virtual driver system ‘Asimov’ has been integrated and tested successfully in multiple applications from urban roads to long-distance highway routes, and in different road conditions.

Michael Fleming, CEO of Torc Robotics, said, “We have always said that commercializing road-ready Level 4 vehicles is a marathon, not a sprint. By partnering with Daimler Trucks, the inventor of the truck and market leader of the industry, we believe the technology will be introduced safely and reliably.”

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