Outrider, the pioneer in autonomous yard operations for logistics hubs, today announced the release of its next-generation autonomy kit for yard automation. Supporting over-the-air software updates and field-swappable units, the latest autonomy kit is designed to deliver enterprise-class reliability, enable remote technical support, and efficiently service the system in the field - all at scale.
"Distribution yards are harsh industrial environments with around-the-clock operations, which means our autonomous system must be rugged, easy to service, and remotely supportable," said Andrew Smith, Founder and CEO of Outrider. "This robust autonomy kit is the next critical step in Outrider's efforts to make yard operations more efficient, safer, and more sustainable for our Fortune 500, logistics-dependent customers."
Outrider's next-generation autonomy kit includes the NVIDIA DRIVE autonomous vehicle platform for perception system processing; Ouster's (NYSE:OUST) high-resolution lidar sensors for perception; and Yaskawa's industrial robotic arm for connecting and disconnecting trailer lines. The autonomy kit is installed and integrated on autonomy-ready Class 8 battery-electric yard trucks. Outrider uses the autonomy kit along with proprietary software to transform these yard trucks into fully autonomous vehicles.
Outrider has specced an autonomy-ready electric yard truck with Orange EV. Outrider and its customers have purchased 24 of these vehicles for expanded customer pilot programs and test operations with the latest autonomy kit. In addition, customers planning future vehicle purchases may now order yard trucks with the "Autonomous Outrider Specification."
According to Tom Baroch, Head of Global Supply Management at Outrider, "This is the single largest purchase of Class 8 electric vehicles specifically designed for autonomous yard operations in the industry and demonstrates how Outrider will be a catalyst for bringing thousands of zero-emission vehicles into the marketplace."
The latest autonomy kit and drive-by-wire yard truck incorporates operational, design, and technical experience gleaned from over 12,000 autonomous trailer moves conducted at customer sites and Outrider's Advanced Testing Facility in Brighton, Colorado. Using data collected from these moves, Outrider's latest autonomy kit is designed to address scenarios encountered by yard trucks in real distribution yards, from the common to the obscure.
Smith added, "This next-generation autonomy kit further highlights Outrider's commitment to our customers for a more sustainable, resilient supply chain. Our team of over 100 talented engineers is laser-focused on the features and safety-critical capabilities that will propel innovations for yard automation and the logistics and transportation sector at large."
In addition to automating the yard truck, Outrider automates other manual tasks traditionally performed in the yard, such as hitching and unhitching trailers; connecting and disconnecting trailer lines; interacting safely with loading docks; tracking trailer locations; integrating with supply chain management systems; and centrally managing and monitoring system functions.
Outrider continues to be the only automation company solely focused on distribution yards. The company partners with many large, logistics-dependent enterprises that represent over 20 percent of all yard trucks operating in North America. The company has raised $118 million in funding to date and developed extensive intellectual property. Outrider operates the first-in-industry Advanced Testing Facility for autonomous yard operations and maintains a broad ecosystem of technology vendors and infrastructure partners. Outrider was recently recognized in Fast Company's prestigious 2022 World's Most Innovative Companies list, placing in the top 10 within the Logistics category.