TuSimple, an autonomous trucking startup, is expanding its collaboration with chipmaker Nvidia to develop an advanced autonomous domain controller (ADC) designed specifically for Level 4 self-driving trucks.
The announcement was made before the official opening of CES 2022. The ADC will use Nvidia’s Drive Orin system-on-chip (SoC), a semiconductor designed for artificial intelligence (AI) autonomous driving. The move will help further TuSimple’s ability to put self-driving trucks on the rode through its Autonomous Freight Network (AFN), a system the company created last year to commercialize Level 4 autonomous trucks in the U.S.
The Drive Orin SoC can deliver 254 trillion operations per second (TOPS) and is the brains for intelligent vehicles and powering autonomous capabilities.
The ADC will serve as a critical component to TuSimple’s automated driving system as it will allow the trucks’ central compute unit to process hundreds of TOPS for perception, planning and actuation functions.
TuSimple said the development of the ADC will allow it to further the development of a commercialized self-driving fleet.
“A high-performance, production-ready ADC is a critical piece to scaling our AFN, and we are taking a hands-on role to advance its development with the help of Nvidia,” said Cheng Lu, president and CEO of TuSimple.
TuSimple’s AFN went into operation in 2020 and operates today a fleet of more than 50 self-driving trucks between Arizona and Florida. Recently, shipping giant DHL ordered 100 self-driving trucks from TuSimple and will also adopt, integrate and scale its Level 4 self-driving technology into DHL’s logistics operations.
While the AFN started in the U.S., TuSimple has initiated efforts in Europe and Asia where it is testing autonomous trucks on public roads in Sweden and at the deep-water port in Shanghai, China.