Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 5

Udelv's Transporter relies on
MobilEye sensors to navigate
Las Vegas public roads at night.
related to loading goods into a Class 2 vehicle, efficiently
routing it on a day-long schedule of stops, and
having specific parcels seamlessly arrive at a determined
location. That presents an entirely different set
of engineering and design challenges.
Akshat Patel, Udelv's CTO, relies on the company's
partnership with MobileEye, announced in April
2021, to enable its Transporter vehicle to complete core
driving functions. That allows Udelv's 35 employees
to focus on automating and robotizing the numerous
tasks around managing loads and deliveries.
" When you enter an unstructured environment
to make a drop-off, there has to be a provision
for the customer to interact with the vehicle to
grab their stuff, " Patel noted. " We solve it through
a collection of in-house technologies for cargo
robotics, cloud robotics, teleoperations and fleet
management intelligence. " The technology also
makes it efficient for humans to remove packages
from the vehicle, albeit manually.
Udelv CEO Daniel Laury explained the primary
challenge. " When it comes to multi-stop, you cannot
afford to mix the goods up among 100 packages, let
alone have somebody steal somebody else's, " Laury told
SAE Media. " You have to invent something that has
never been done before, a system of intelligent lockers.
That's what we created. "
Hardware-software solution
Udelv conducted thousands of deliveries with its
first-generation vehicle that had fixed lockers. It didn't
AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE ENGINEERING
work because the fixed lockers often were too small or
too big for the intended cargo. " If you're carrying small
pills for Walgreens, you need small compartments, "
Laury explained. " But if you're delivering a muffler for
an auto-parts company, which is 90 inches long, you
need a big space. "
After Udelv trials revealed the problem of not
having suitable locker sizes for the range of diverse
products that needed to be delivered, the team went
back to the drawing board. The result is the Transporter,
which was unveiled at CES 2022. While the press and
crowds at CES focused once again on the technology
stack - 13 cameras, nine lidars, six radars, and other
sensors - the Transporter's core innovation is its
adaptive shelving space.
The system uses four sliding surfaces - horizontally
and vertically on both sides - creating a rightsized
cubby to carry everything from a 58-inch television
to a 12-pack of beer. If every package is uniformly
small, there's room for 80 compartments. " The shelving
behind the vehicle's main doors is adjustable so that a
goods organization can have dynamic space and the
merchant can, on the fly, decide how they want to
configure different spaces, " said Patel. " The aperture
is dynamic and it's software controlled. "
The mathematics of common multi-delivery
starts with Amazon setting the benchmark of 200
to 250 stops a day via a single truck. FedEx drivers
commonly make 100 stops a day. The control algorithm
for the Transporter's dynamic partitions -
supported by a range of off-the-shelf position sensors,
April 2022 5
Udelv

Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022

Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - CVR4
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - CVR1
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - CVR2
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 1
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 2
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 3
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 4
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 5
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 6
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 7
Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - 8
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Autonomous Vehicle Engineering - April 2022 - CVR3
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