As a strategic investor, Pilot Flying J convey a number of advantages. Along with monetary backing, the corporate will be part of Kodiak’s board of administrators. We’ll additionally open an autonomous truckport close to Atlanta, Georgia, to progress towards Kodiak’s objective of automating the “center mile.”
Center mile automation means hauling masses autonomously over the lengthy distances between the “first mile” and the “final mile”. These factors, at both finish of a journey, contain complicated city driving, at which human truck drivers excel. The center mile entails extra routine long-distance freeway driving.
The Kodiak partnership with Pilot Flying J demonstrates how effectively this mannequin can serve human drivers, who’re the spine of Pilot Flying J’s buyer base. Human truck drivers usually should spend lengthy intervals of time away from their households whereas hauling freight over that center mile, from coast to coast. Drivers incessantly sleeping at the back of their truck cabs, whereas their households are again house, in one other state.
An autonomous center mile would improve total freight visitors, which means much more native jobs for people driving the primary and final mile. As a substitute of getting to haul freight coast-to-coast, spending days or perhaps weeks on the street, drivers might haul masses within the house space and spend each night time with their households.
To convey this imaginative and prescient to fruition, Kodiak and Pilot Flying J will work collectively to effectively hand off masses between Kodiak’s autonomous vehicles and human-driven vehicles protecting the primary and final mile.
That’s what makes this partnership, and what it might flip into, so thrilling.