Autonomous vehicle developer Aurrigo has launched a new autonomous luggage and cargo system which it says offers a host of operational and financial savings to the aviation sector. The company states that its Auto Dolly vehicles have the ability to navigate autonomously from one task to another, collecting and dropping off items automatically using a powered roller deck and the unique ability to ‘crab’ sideways when docking and parallel parking.
It notes that all-weather running is possible thanks to weather-hardened sensors and innovative software processes that allow the vehicles to operate in snow, heavy rain, direct sunlight and fog.
A recent trial at Heathrow Airport, and a digital-twinning project with a leading Far Eastern airport, have shown that the technology can reduce the number of traditional tugs and trailers used to transport cargo and luggage by two thirds, as well as substantially cut carbon emissions.
“The aviation sector is going through one of the worst periods in living memory. When it emerges, it will need to explore ways where it can achieve cost savings and increase operational efficiencies, including turning around planes and getting them away on time,” explained David Keene, CEO of Aurrigo.
“Auto Dolly will revolutionize airports by improving efficiency in the way aircraft luggage and cargo is loaded, unloaded and handled. The autonomous system virtually eliminates all human contact, extremely important in today’s Covid-19 world, and unlike the tugs that are used today, every Auto Dolly is able to carry a load. This results in improved space utilization in the baggage hall, as no valuable space is taken up by a vehicle that cannot move something.”
Together with the Auto Dolly launch, Aurrigo is also releasing its Auto-Sim product, an airport simulator software tool enabling customers to map current operations and then model how to migrate from manual methods through to a fully automated autonomous operation.