DeepWay Unveils Heavy-Duty Autonomous Freight Truck
September 17, 2021
DeepWay, a company backed by China’s Baidu, has unveiled Xingtu, a smart energy, heavy-duty truck with more than 500 TOPS computing power and ultra-long-distance capabilities of more than 1 kilometer. Xingtu will be powered by Baidu’s AI technology stack and the Apollo autonomous driving platform, marking Baidu’s entry into the multi-trillion-dollar global freight market.
The company said the first generation of Xingtu is designed to enable Level 3 self-driving on high-speed freight routes, with Level 4 capabilities on the same routes expected between 2024 and 2026.
“Autonomous driving must use advanced driverless technology to create new products that offer the ultimate experience in order to achieve commercial success,” said Yunpeng Wang, vice president and general manager of autonomous driving technology at Baidu. “We aim to create value in real-life scenarios such as transporting people, delivery and life services. This new generation of vehicle is by no means just a modified truck – it’s a robot truck.”
DeepWay said Xingtu offers four core advantages: deep intelligence, deep performance, deep design, and deep space:
- Deep intelligence: Xingtu includes DeepWay’s home-grown highway intelligence system (HIS) and a computing power of more than 500 TOPS. Equipped with advanced algorithms, 10 onboard cameras, five millimeter wave radars and three infrared detectors, Xingtu aims to achieve end-to-end autonomous driving – from perception to planning, within 100ms and ultra-long range detection of more than 1 km.
- Deep performance: SImulation tests with the China Automobile Research Institute showed a wind resistance coefficient as low as 0.35, which effectively reduces overall energy consumption, DeepWay said. At a full load of 49 tons, the custom-developed 450kWh battery pack can travel up to 300 km on a single charge, and recharges in just one hour at a 1C current. DeepWay has also developed a quick-swap solution for the battery, enabling freight drivers to swap out their battery in six minutes. This aims to reduce energy, maintenance and operation costs, as well as transportation time.
- Deep design: Xingtu includes a lightweight integrated battery and chassis design, which aims to greatly reduce wind resistance. Coupled with an E/E architecture that integrates across multiple domains, the vehicle is easier to control, making it more stable and safer to operate, DeepWay said.
- Deep space: The new generation of smart cabin adopts a concept of separate driving, working and living spaces, giving more room to drivers. Equipped with an intelligent voice assistant, large touchscreen infotainment system and ultra-comfortable seats and bet, the Xingtu will provide freight drivers with a more comfortable working and living environment while on the road, DeepWay said.
Baidu said its Apollo technology has been under development since 2013, and has nearly 8.7 million test miles. The new truck adds intelligent freight options to Baidu’s other autonomous driving solutions, which includes passenger cars, Apollo Go robotaxis and minibuses. DeepWay said it will focus on research and development and manufacturing of new trucks to promote the commercialization of L4 autonomous driving technology in China in the coming years.
More details on the Apollo technology can be found here.