Plus said its new Open Platform for Autonomy system will make it easier for fleets to transition to self-driving trucks.   -  Photo: Jack Roberts

Plus said its new Open Platform for Autonomy system will make it easier for fleets to transition to self-driving trucks. 

Photo: Jack Roberts

Autonomous truck developer Plus unveiled its Open Platform for Autonomy (OPA), a new open-platform autonomous control technology that uses AI-based technology for highly automated and fully autonomous driving solutions.

According to the company, OPA is an open and modular software platform powered by the latest AI models for autonomous vehicle control systems. Plus said OPA supports all levels of autonomy, adapts to specific customer needs, and is optimized for cost-to-performance ratio. 

OPA will enable autonomous driving capabilities on customizable configurations across different sensors, processors, vehicle platforms and powertrains, according to a press release. Plus said it has packaged OPA into a suite of solutions that span driver-in next generation safety systems to its “highly automated” PlusDrive and driver-out Level 4 SuperDrive control systems.

There are three main advantages to OPA, according to Plus:

  • Open platform leverages latest AI-based technology to enable next-generation safety systems for highly automated and fully autonomous driving solutions.
  • Modularization of software platform designed to give customers maximum flexibility to personalize driving experiences.
  • Use of common underlying Level 4 autonomous driving software will accelerate speed and ease of transition to higher levels of autonomy in subsequent generations of vehicles.

Modularity, Flexibility and Scalability by Design

Plus’s OPA consists of off-board modules, autonomous vehicle functional modules, and vehicle integration modules. Plus described it as a “brain” that connects all systems needed to enable autonomous driving capabilities. These range from sensor suites that are “seeing” the world to the computing platform that processes all the data and the actuation systems that control the vehicle.

According to Plus, OPA will enable customers to integrate automated driving capabilities into their vehicles, while retaining ultimate control over their autonomy solutions.

OPA supports use cases across all levels of autonomy by using the foundational Level 4 autonomous driving software as its common base. Next-generation safety systems benefit from perception technology in the OPA.

The L2++ PlusDrive solution is already in commercial use to deliver freight across the U.S. and being tested on public roads in Europe.

According to Plus, these deployments give customers the opportunity to benefit from safer and more fuel-efficient automated driving today.

Over-the-air software updates of OPA enable continuous improvement and expansion of features for drivers, supporting customer OEMs’ software-defined vehicle strategies. OEM customers expanding their vehicle range to include higher levels of automation in the future will experience a seamless and faster transition, both from technology and end user standpoint, according to the company.

Plus’s L4 SuperDrive solution is also being deployed to help bring autonomous trucks to Australia.

Calling it a "game-changer," Shawn Kerrigan, Plus COO and co-founder, said in a release, "Not only does it provide vehicle manufacturers and Tier 1s maximum flexibility to develop products customized for their audiences, it’s a natural pathway to evolve their offerings into higher levels of automation over time.”

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