Robo-trucking Company TuSimple Teams up with the USPS to Haul Mail
COVID-19 and China
TuSimple's driverless car. PHOTO: Credit to TuSimple

China’s self-driving logistics company TuSimple (图森未来) announced that the firm is getting a chance to provide its tech for the United States Postal Service (USPS). TuSimple’s driverless trucks run on the more than 1,600-mile routine between the Postal Service’s Phoenix, Arizona, and Dallas, Texas distribution centers.

The pilot program is an important milestone for the company and it is also the first time that the company expands its driverless trucking service beyond the Arizona area. During the two-week trial, TuSimple will run its fleets of autonomous driving trucks for 22 hours, from day to night, along Interstates 10, 20 and 30 corridors to make the trip through Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. TuSimple arranges a safety engineer and driver on board to monitor their performance.

The company claims that other clients have expressed strong requests for this kind of service, which will be the company’s core business in America.

Headquartered in Beijing, TuSimple has an R&D center in San Diego. In March, the company was selected as the future solution provider for "AI+ transportation" application scenarios. By connecting the intelligent network with self-driving trucks and connecting the logistics hub, a complete closed-loop network of trunk logistics can be formed to consolidate the foundation of intelligent logistics.

Last November, the company acquired its road testing license granted by the Shanghai government. After testing for six months on remote Shanghai roads, TuSimple now runs autonomous tractor-trailers from the Yangshan Port to a nearby railway station, the company says, Los Angeles Times reports.

Using an eight-camera array and other sensors, TuSimple's trucks can detect cars, pedestrians, and other obstacles up to 1,000 meters away, even in inclement weather (but not at night). That’s the main tech difference between TuSimple and other self-driving companies which deploys lidar as their main solutions to see. The latter detects things from 250- to 300-meter range. Thus, the company claims better efficiency than its competitors. The company aims at adding its autonomous driving trucks to 50 by June in the U.S.

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