First driverless autonomous truck test completed

In News2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJanuary 11, 2022

San Diego autonomous technology company TuSimple has successfully completed what it says is the world’s first fully autonomous semi-truck run on open public roads without a driver in the vehicle.

The run took place in December with the journey starting in Tucson, Arizona and finishing some 80 miles away in Phoenix.

According to TuSimple, its Autonomous Driving System successfully navigated surface streets, traffic signals, on-ramps, off-ramps, emergency lane vehicles, and highway lane changes in open traffic while naturally interacting with other motorists.

The one-hour and 20-minute drive is the first time a class 8 autonomous truck has operated on open public roads without a human in the vehicle and without human intervention and is part of an ongoing test program that will continue into 2022.

The test was performed in close collaboration with the Arizona Department of Transportation and law enforcement. The autonomous driving test was 100% operated by TuSimple’s ADS without a human on-board, without remote human control of the vehicle, and without traffic intervention.

“By achieving this momentous technical milestone, we demonstrated the advanced capabilities of TuSimple’s autonomous driving system and the commercial maturity of our testing process, prioritising safety and collaboration every step of the way. This test reinforces what we believe is our unique position at the forefront of autonomous trucking, delivering advanced driving technology at commercial scale,” said Cheng Lu, president, and CEO, TuSimple.

“This year, we were laser-focused on putting our technology through a rigorous test on open public roads under real-world conditions, and to see all our hard work and dedication come together is extremely rewarding.”