ThorDrive's autonomous indoor electric vehicle, 'Air Ride', has begun pilot operations at Incheon International Airport

October 14, 2020

ThorDrive, a startup focused on developing an autonomous driving platform, has showcased the capabilities of autonomous driving connectivity services through pilot programs for autonomous delivery in the Silicon Valley region of the United States and South Korea. Today, the company announced the introduction of its autonomous driving electric vehicle, Air Ride. Air Ride, an indoor unmanned autonomous electric vehicle developed by ThorDrive, will be piloted at the arrival gate of Incheon International Airport's Terminal 1 and the departure gate of Terminal 2 starting from October 14th. ThorDrive is a mobility tech startup that develops comprehensive solutions and platforms for fully autonomous driving. The company has successfully tested its autonomous driving technology in various road environments, including cities in the Silicon Valley region of the United States and downtown Seoul, South Korea. Additionally, ThorDrive has piloted autonomous delivery services. Through the introduction of the pilot service of autonomous vehicles indoors at Incheon International Airport, the company is expected to solidify its position as a company with practical autonomous driving technology capable of providing commercial services.

Air Ride is an unmanned autonomous electric vehicle that provides transportation services for individuals who are transportation disadvantaged. It can accommodate up to four passengers and uses camera sensors and LiDAR sensors to recognize pedestrians and various obstacles. It is also equipped with artificial intelligence-based object detection technology that learns the movements of objects and predicts their paths. It has high-precision positioning technology with an error of less than 10 centimeters, even in indoor environments such as passenger terminals where GPS signals may be lost. Additionally, it has driving path generation and judgment capabilities that allow it to safely navigate through pedestrian areas without collisions. These technologies ensure high levels of safety and driving stability. The information monitor, equipped with four languages (Korean, English, Chinese, and Japanese), allows passengers to select their desired destination. It also automatically detects when a passenger disembarks and proceeds to the next destination. It also has the ability to automatically return to a charging station when the battery is low.

Air Ride is supported by a 5G communication network-based control service and has a system that can effectively handle various unexpected situations that may arise during service operation in real time, without any issues. Through this, an autonomous vehicle can provide safer commercial services and serve as a good example of unmanned autonomous indoor vehicle operations.

Kye Dong-kyoung, CEO of ThorDrive, mentioned, "The world's first indoor unmanned autonomous vehicle to be piloted at Incheon International Airport will further strengthen ThorDrive's position as a company with practical autonomous driving technology that can provide commercial services." He also stated, "Starting with the pilot service of autonomous electric vehicle service at Incheon International Airport, ThorDrive plans to expand the service area of unmanned autonomous driving platforms to include domestic and foreign airports, large shopping malls, logistics warehouses, and industrial sites in the near future." The company will also expedite research and development to commercialize its autonomous driving technology through a range of services.

ThorDrive aims to accelerate its expansion into new markets by introducing a new concept of autonomous driving vehicles in the U.S. market. The company will begin by launching Air Ride, an autonomous indoor vehicle designed to transport disadvantaged individuals at Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 of Incheon International Airport.

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