Volvo has successfully tested a fully autonomous truck in a working mine about 1300 meters underground in northern Sweden, in what it calls a world first.
“This is the world’s first fully self-driving truck to operate under such tough conditions. It is a true challenge to ensure that everything works meticulously more than 1300 metres underground,” said Torbjörn Holmström, member of the Volvo Group Executive Board and Volvo Group Chief Technology Officer.
Volvo’s fully autonomous truck is the first in the world to be tested in operations deep underground in the Kristineberg Mine, said Volvo. The self-driving truck is part of a development project aimed at improving the transport flow and safety in the mine. The truck will cover a distance of 7 kilometers, reaching 1,320 meters underground in the narrow mine tunnels.
The entirely self-driving truck is a specially equipped Volvo FMX. Using various sensors, it continuously monitors its surroundings and avoids both fixed and moving obstacles. An on-board transport system simultaneously gathers data to optimize and coordinate the route and fuel consumption.