Embark announced it has completed a coast-to-coast trip across the United States with an automated truck.
The truck, which had a driver at the wheel at all times, completed a 2,400-mile journey along Interstate 10 from Los Angeles to Jacksonville, FL. An estimated $100 billion of freight travels this corridor annually.
Embark said in a statement this successful trip addresses a criticism of self-driving trucks that mapping the long distances traveled by automated trucks would act as a barrier to expansion.
Embark said the trip was completed without high-resolution maps that have become standard in self-driving. Instead, Embark uses machine learning to reconstruct a model of the world using only its sensors in real time. As a result it could complete the cross-country trip without having to first pre-map the entire route.
Late last year, Embark began moving refrigerators for Electrolux along what it called “the world’s longest automated freight route from Los Angeles to El Paso, TX.”
“When we announced our Los Angeles to El Paso route we promised that was the just first stage of a much larger expansion.” said Embark CEO Alex Rodrigues. “The coast-to-coast demonstration we completed today is four times longer than our El Paso route, which was already the longest in the world.”