It’s not at all the first time we talk about the ANITA project as for autonomous trucks. As a matter of fact, ANITA stands for Autonomous Innovation in Terminal Operations and the project itself aims at studying and developing the use of self-driving trucks within port terminals, starting from the main ports in Germany. MAN Truck & Bus, Deutsche Bahn, Fresenius University of Applied Sciences, and Götting KG are some of the partners: here some more info about the whole project.
The ANITA project: the very first public drive
Now, with the first public drive of the autonomous truck driving system on the MAN test track in Munich, the partners presented what has been achieved so far and announced intensive practical and development drives at the container depot of DB Intermodal Services and the DUSS terminal in Ulm Dornstadt as the next step.
The aim of ANITA is to use autonomous trucks to stabilize the processes involved in transferring containers from road to rail, making them more efficient, easier to plan and at the same time more flexible. This will enable more goods to be transported in environmentally friendly combined transport in the future. To this end, MAN will be sharpening the electronic senses of the autonomous truck in the real operating environment over the coming months so that it can perceive the surroundings, react, and plan like a real driver.
Target: the end of the decade
The partners plan a full year of test drives to confront the autonomous prototype with reality as often as possible during the step-by-step development and optimization process. A safety driver is always on board to intervene if necessary. The intensive test drives benefit not only the further development of the autonomous truck but also the preparation of the terminals for the integration of the new technology.
«The basic automation technology for ANITA is ready. For fine-tuning, we are now going into direct comparison with practice in order to further develop the system with a view to operational reliability and added value for the future user», said Frederik Zohm, Executive Board Member for Research and Development at MAN Truck & Bus, during the premiere drive. «We are consistently pursuing this approach in order to be able to offer autonomous trucks in terminal traffic as series technology from the end of the decade».