April 7, 2020 - For the first time, Einride is publicly showcasing its one operator to multiple vehicle capability in action at a customer site. This technology sets the precedent for a future where one remote operator can take responsibility for several self-driving Pods, monitoring them when in autonomous mode and taking active control of a vehicle for unforeseen or more complicated maneuvers, such as parking at a loading dock. A video of the showcase, which features one operator overseeing and controlling two Pods, is available here.
"The remote operation and oversight of autonomous vehicles requires robust real-time video and data transmission, managed through a secure channel over often insecure infrastructure. With this milestone, we are laying the technical foundation for swift and easy switching between vehicles as well as the ongoing scaling of this functionality. Not only can we switch between monitored vehicles, but also between operators in different geographical locations, increasing the flexibility of our system exponentially,” said Pär Degerman, CTO of Einride.
As autonomous electric transport (AET) vehicles such as the Einride Pod are introduced into a freight network, transport managers will be able to employ operators who will monitor and control fleets of driverless vehicles from a remote drive station, eventually expanding up to as many as ten per operator. This has the potential to increase the average work day for a fleet of vehicles from 8 to 24 hours with optimized charging, loading, and unloading schedules, increasing productivity up to 200 percent while reducing the hourly cost of transport by 30 percent. Additionally, many tedious or time-consuming tasks will be a thing of the past for operators, as he or she will not have to wait for loading and unloading, refueling or recharging to oversee and operate other vehicles.
Expanding the driver-to-vehicle ratio from one-to-one to one-to-many also has the potential to exponentially improve fleet efficiency in terms of cost, time, and sustainability. Currently with Einride’s Freight Mobility Platform, shippers are able to track their entire fleets in real time and optimize routes and schedules for cost and emissions reduction. The platform also provides recommendations on where to introduce low- or zero-emissions transport options into the network.
“The cost of transport continues to increase by 2 to 3 percent year-over-year, while the average capacity utilization of any given transport vehicle remains around 25 percent. With the ability to monitor and control multiple AET vehicles with just one remote operator, we can dramatically improve the cost efficiency of every vehicle in a fleet, not to mention significantly reducing emissions and improving the work environment for truck drivers.” said Robert Falck, Founder and CEO of Einride.
Beyond the cost and sustainability benefits, this innovation takes one step further in transforming what it means to be a trucker. In place of long, tiresome, and potentially dangerous hours on the road, remote operators will have a more stable, safe, and regular work environment. This fundamental shift will be crucial in addressing the systematic problems in the trucking industry, such a shortage of over 51,000 truckers and a gender split that is only 6 percent female in the U.S.
In the future, operators will be employed by customers and operational partners, relying on the Einride Freight Mobility Platform for optimization and execution of electric and autonomous operations.
Einride is a Swedish technology company that develops and provides freight transport solutions based on electric and autonomous vehicles. It was founded in 2016 by Robert Falck, Linnéa Kornehed and Filip Lilja, and became the world’s first company to operate an autonomous, all-electric freight vehicle on a commercial route on a public road. Recently, the company launched the Einride Freight Mobility Platform, a cloud-native transport execution system for autonomous, electric and traditional road transportation. With the platform, customers can use real-time information and actionable insights to implement sustainable, cost-efficient and high performing transport logistics.