February 2, 2022
Autonomous trucking firm TuSimple has announced that It will begin moving freight for Union Pacific Railroad on a fully automated trucking route between the Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona metro areas. Starting this spring, TuSimple said it will carry Driver Out freight for Union Pacific with its autonomous vehicle technology to deliver goods to their destination faster and more cost-effectively.
“Partnering with TuSimple allows us to extend our operations beyond our rail hubs and serve our customers faster and more efficiently,” said Kenny Rocker, executive vice president for marketing and sales at Union Pacific. “This groundbreaking autonomous driving technology and our partnership provide us a significant opportunity to scale the technology in our network, proactively reducing global supply chain congestion.”
Since announcing its first successful autonomous semi-truck in December 2021, TuSimple reported an additional six successful runs. With seven runs, the company has covered more than 550 cumulative miles on open public roads without a human in the vehicle, without teloperation, or any traffic intervention. The company said runs were conducted in various roadway conditions, including dense early-evening traffic and back to back runs on the same night.
TuSimple added it plans to continue the Driver Out program and expand its scope to include daytime runs and new routes, while also making improvements to its AV technology. It plans to achieve commercial availability for Driver Out by the end of 2023 in a significant shipping area, such as the so-called “Texas Triangle.”
“Our repeatable and scalable Driver Out operations marks a significant inflection point in our company’s history,” said Cheng Lu, president and CEO of TuSimple. “We are proud of our on-time delivery of this historic milestone and are excited to shift our full focus to commercializing our ground-breaking technology on an accelerated timeline.”
For more details on TuSimple’s safety case for its Driver Out operations, visit this website.