Volga | Industry, manufacturing | Technology & innovation
Driverless truck may hit Russian roads in 2020
23 Mar '15
Two Russian companies—IT developer Cognitive Technologies and KamAZ, one of this country’s largest truck makers—are pooling efforts in developing a driverless IT-enabled truck, portal Lenta.ru reported.
The project is reported to require a total of $6.5m in investment in the setup of serial production. The Russian Ministry of Education and Science is said to be anteing up the lion’s share of the amount ($5m), with the rest expected to come from KamAZ.
This is a long-term endeavor, with an inaugural truck for commercial purposes slated for the road by 2020.
Cognitive Technologies is responsible for developing a self-contained control system, while the Russian truck maker is expected to create a vehicle to accommodate such a system.
Formally set up in 1993, Cognitive Technologies has in fact been in the Soviet/Russian market since 1968, when the core of its today’s team developed IT complexes and automatic control systems for the then Soviet government and a number of large-scale factories in the USSR.
The developers expect to come up with their first prototype of a robotized truck by the end of this year already. Next year, the partners hope to start using the ‘drones’ for their internal purposes. In 2017, they have plans to launch a pilot project on the roads of Tatarstan, KamAZ’s home region in the mid-Volga area. To legitimize the existence of such vehicles on the Russian roads a number of regional Tatarstan laws are to be amended also in 2017.
“The project aims to enable real operation in the actual Russian environment. Unlike international developers that work on their solutions for ideal road situations, with perfect road marking and good weather conditions, our computer vision system will be able to identify road conditions in the absence of any marking,” said Oleg Savin, the project manager.
According to the developers, the system will be able to assess the density of traffic on a road, see obstacles, and, with danger spotted, respond to a slightest change in the road situation within less than 0.3 sec.
Germany’s Mercedes has also been working on a similar robotized truck project.