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 World's Largest Truck Goes Robotic

This story is from the category Artificial Intelligence
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Date posted: 10/11/2008

The largest truck in the world is about to become the largest robotic vehicle in the world. Computer scientists from Carnegie Mellon University have teamed up with engineers from Caterpillar to automate the 700-ton trucks, which are made to haul loads up to 240 tons from mines.

"Autonomous vehicle technology is pretty much in its infancy," said Tony Stentz, a professor at CMU involved in the project. Stentz expects that over the next five to 10 years, the technology will expand to areas beyond mining, eventually finding its way into consumer cars and trucks.

Catepillar's soon-to-be-automated hauling trucks will be the largest but not the first. Caterpillar's rival, Japan-based Komatsu, already runs automated trucks at the Gaby mine in Chile. Rio Tinto, a British/Australian mining company, recently announced plans to fully automate its Pilbara iron ore mines in Australia, including its Komatsu trucks, by the end of this November.

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