Driverless Truck Keeps Road Construction Workers Safe

August 28, 2015

Royal Truck and Equipment has introduced an autonomous truck-mounted attenuator (TMA).

The ATMA has an electro-mechanical system and fully integrated sensor suite that allows the truck to follow a lead vehicle completely unmanned, the company says.

Operation requires a Leader/Follower configuration, with a lead vehicle driven by a human, followed by the unmanned ATMA. The leader has a NAV Module strapped to the roof. This module contains a GPS receiver, system computer, digital compass, and transceiver. It transmits GPS position back to the ATMA, which uses the data to follow the exact path and speed of the Lead vehicle at each point of the route.

Applications, according to Royal president Robert Roy, include any unbarricaded road construction project in traffic. Examples include striping, sign removal, bridge inspection, traffic-light repairs, etc. The ATMA follows the work truck, mimicking its movement and providing the attenuation protection.