Documenting the Coming Singularity

Monday, November 10, 2008

World's Largest Truck Goes Robotic

* Blog author's note: Can't recall the name of it, but this is eerily reminiscent of a horror movie I watched as a kid about Caterpillar D-9s running amok.

Discovery News - November 6, 2008, by Eric Bland

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.

That's nearly two million pounds of metal, fuel and stone powered by a 3,550-horsepower, 24-valve engine moving at up to 42 miles per hour, with software and a robot at the wheel.

"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.

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