Kalmar partners with Coast Autonomous5 January 2022
Cargo handling specialist Kalmar looks to develop its robotics solutions through collaboration with autonomous driving technology specialist Coast Autonomous
Kalmar, part of Cargotec, has signed a joint development agreement with Coast Autonomous Inc. to speed up the development and launch of robotic solutions across its mobile equipment offering. To emphasise the common long-term interests of the partnership between the companies, Kalmar has become a minority shareholder of Coast Autonomous.
The joint development agreement and investment in Coast Autonomous follows the introduction of Kalmar Robotic Portfolio – a future range of intelligent, flexible and autonomous mobile equipment solutions designed to improve safety, eco-efficiency and productivity of cargo and material handling in ports and terminals, distribution centres and heavy logistics.
Coast Autonomous is an autonomous driving technology start-up based in California, USA, providing mobility solutions to move people and goods in urban and industrial environments. Coast Autonomous has developed a proprietary autonomous vehicle system that includes mapping and localisation, robotics and artificial intelligence, fleet management and supervision. In the initial phase, the partnership between Kalmar and Coast Autonomous will focus on the autonomous driving functionality of the Kalmar RoboTractor – an autonomous terminal tractor.
Lasse Eriksson, vice president, technology at Kalmar, said: “Partnership between Kalmar and Coast Autonomous highlights the importance of collaboration in our industry, especially in the area of robotics. Coast’s unique technology that addresses safety on each level and the broad experience in autonomous driving solutions provides us with a great opportunity to accelerate the robotisation journey and the launch of Kalmar Robotic Portfolio. As safety is the key criteria in everything we do at Kalmar, we are excited about the collaboration with Coast and the opportunity to integrate their safe autonomous driving solutions that will enable autonomous operation in mixed-traffic environments in the future.”
Adrian Sussmann, president and CFO, Coast Autonomous, said: “Our technologists have been focussed, for over 20 years, on developing safe autonomous vehicle systems for pedestrian and industrial environments. The collaboration with Kalmar is the perfect application for our technology and we are excited to integrate our robotic solutions into their best-in-class vehicles, bringing improved safety and efficiency to the market. To work with the market leading OEM in ports and terminal operations is an amazing opportunity and a wonderful endorsement of our unique approach. We are at the dawn of a new era in robotics and the partnership with Kalmar validates our belief that safe autonomous vehicles will proliferate rapidly in industrial settings providing tremendous benefit and value for all.”