Autonomous vehicles are coming to industry to help move goods in manufacturing, distribution centres, yards, warehouses and mining. Cyngn, that recently went public in the U.S. with the symbol (CYN), provides robotics software and data insights solutions for industry logistics.
Lior Tal, CEO Cyngn, reveals to Auto Futures how the company plans to transform commercial enterprises through intelligent self-driving fleets.
Tal is no stranger to new forms of technology. He was the founder of the mobile app Snaptu that was acquired by Facebook in 2011. Before that, he was an attorney in intellectual property, commercial and corporate law in Israel.
The company first started to make software to compete with Apple and Google. However, when Tal came in and did an audit and the focus was changed.
“I could see that the operating system opportunity was missed. We did identify that the same transformation that came through Google and Apple through software would be happening with passenger vehicles, mining and industrial vehicles,” says Tal.
“There was massive curiosity about how to create autonomous software for everything that moves like high-end passenger vehicles. Then there are small little robots and everything in between,” he adds.
The company looked at vehicles for manufacturing. Then set their sights on those vehicles and to create the software that would run that, says Tal.
Currently, Cyngn is working with vehicle manufacturers to retrofit existing vehicles.
In the future, Cyngn’s Enterprise Autonomy Suite (EAS) software will come pre-installed on new vehicles. This is for all kinds of vehicles such as mining operations, automated fleets and more with a full spectrum of applications.
“Our method to our madness is it is the app for the next meaningful level of software for a full spectrum of usage,” says Tal.
The types of vehicles include indoor vehicles, such as stock carts and payloaders which can be very cost-effective compared to labour. Plus, this software can work at a higher speed moving more materials, he explains.
The software will be continually updated. In fact, Cyngn announced it is integrating Airbiquity’s OTAmatic for over-the-air updates of the Cyngn DriveMod autonomous driving system.
There is a big market. Tal says there are cost savings because the system can work on hundred-ton mining trucks, all the way down to small vehicles. Applications include manufacturing, logistics, warehouse and yard operations, airports and seaports.
“It is solving problems for people. We built software like robotaxis that can take over the jobs of employees and is at least as good as people,” says Tal, “The telepresence is there to take over the task when needed.”
Plus, autonomy is sustainable. The vehicles are electric because it is more efficient. The software is more effective than human articulation. The most important thing is that the vehicles need a form of articulation such as drive-by-wire. Mining vehicles are large but are still viable as long as they have articulation. Industrial vehicles are simple, rigid and very significant for business, says Tal.
The data generated and collected by Cyngn will help keep all the links in the supply chain working.
“The key is we have hundreds of thousands of vehicles working in operations. All that is needed are sensors and software. Then over time, we gain more insight and can see 360°. The vehicles scan the shelves and look at what is hot,” says Tal.
“We are increasingly at 4.0 of Internet-of-Things in the industry where the vehicles themselves are doing more and more while creating more insight into the business,” he adds.
“In the past five years at Cyngn, there has been an investment in software. In the next 18 to 24 months, we are going to put the system in the hands of customers to be cost-effective. We are going to keep building the system as we see more significant gains for more vehicles,” says Tal.
“To compete – we have to be disruptive with IoT industry 4.0.”
Cyngn is a SaaS system. It is more cost-effective than the high cost of labour, with fees ranging from $60,000 to $120,000 per vehicle per year depending on the vehicle, says Tal.
The software will work with Wi-Fi, LTE, 4G or for higher quality for low latency private 5G Network. Cyngn software is hardware agnostic as far as modems and also hardware agnostic for types of vehicles operated.
Cyngn’s autonomous vehicle technology has fleet management enabling operators to switch between autonomous, manual, and remotely operated modes. Cyngn’s EAS consists of full-stack autonomous driving DriveMod, CyngnInsight control center and Cygn Evolve data optimization tools.
Support services are also provided. The company announced a partnership with Columbia Vehicle Group in October. Columbia makes electric utility vehicles.
The first autonomous work for Cyngn engine software is for the edge shifts which can make a significant change. Companies usually can get employees to work the first and second shifts. They have trouble with a labour shortage for the third shift, says Tal.
In the future, Tal sees automation will take over everything a person could do with greater safety, depending on the situation and provide data and analytics.
Down the road, you will have vehicles that do everything humans do such as all the vehicles in warehouses. Humans will do what they are most efficient and productive at–planning and architecture, says Tal.
“We can’t stand in the way of innovation. To compete – we have to be disruptive with IoT industry 4.0,” says Tal.