The U.S. postal service (USPS) as part of the contest has selected a contractor to conduct an unmanned test trucks for long-haul transportation. It was the company TuSimple based in San Diego. Test trucks will pass on the route between the cities of Phoenix and Dallas. Two of the distribution center, located in the South-West of the USA are separated by a distance of over 1,600 kilometers. The journey takes 22 hours and is mainly on highways.
A total of unmanned trucks, endowed with the fourth level of autonomy within two weeks of the pilot program must make five trips back and forth. Test results will become clearer as the form in which the drones will come in a large shipping service in the USA.
What is the fourth level of autonomy?
The so-called fourth level of autonomy implies that the machine is controlled automatically, but the drive must be driver, ready at any moment to seize control for themselves. In this case, in the cab of each unmanned truck will be two security engineer whowill monitor the situation, while the drones will perform the task of delivery between the two distribution centers USPS.
The company TuSimple call this experiment a major milestone in the development of commercial unmanned freight transport. According to its logistics, 60 percent of the total domestic economic activity in the U.S. occurs at Interstate 10 (I-10), passing through the territory of eight States and is the main artery of transportation between Arizona, new Mexico and parts of Texas.
It should be added that authorities of the state of Arizona has passed a law allowing the use on its territory of a self-governing automobiles. For Texas, the rules under which driving should be people who are ready to take control. In the law of new Mexico the question of unmanned vehicles has not been discussed yet, so for them, yet there is no legal framework.
Unmanned transport in Europe
We will remind that recently in Switzerland on public roads appeared first driverless electric truck T-Pod from the company Einride. It is used by a provider of international logistics services of DB Schenker. Permit for the operation of the truck issued until 31 December 2020. In the future, the company plans to expand the fleet of unmanned trucks up to 200 units, and then to go with them to the international market including the US market.