The box contains a computer, based on an Nvidia Jetson module, that processes data based on Yeti Moves autonomy algorithms. In addition, it includes a power supply, an Ethernet switch and modules for communication and GNSS navigation, as well as an IMU inertial navigation system. We have also created a BSP (board support package) which consists of a Linux Yocto operating system and APIs so that the Yeti Moves autonomy application can access the box’s hardware.
The Yeti Moves autonomous columns of plow trucks are manned by one safety driver, located in the car in front. The driver does not operate the vehicle directly, but can, if necessary, override parameters for all vehicles in the column, such as speed or stop the operation if you have to wait for other traffic. According to Anders Fuglesteg Nilsen, the safety driver is still necessary, as there are still no sensor systems that are reliable enough to function flawlessly in harsh weather conditions with storms and snow drifts.
Tom Holtermann Andersen, head of Data Respons R&D Services’ Kongsberg department, highlights the control box’s extensive connector interface, which consists of antenna connectors for 4G, 5G and GNSS. In addition, there is an interface to the vehicle’s CAN bus. It is through this that the box controls the vehicle’s drive-by-wire system. It is supplied by German Schaeffler Paravan and was originally developed as joystick control of cars for disabled individuals.
CTO of Yeti Move, Anders Fuglesteg Nilsen, explains:
– The box contains a mobile modem, which is connected to our fleet control system, which is located in Azure. Via the box and separate interfaces, we actuate the drive-by-wire system and control the brush that hangs on the back of the vehicle, controlling stuff like brush direction and speed.
– At the beginning of the project, we wanted a unit that was designed for installation inside the cab. However, we quickly concluded that it was better to have a dedicated control box that would be robust enough to be mounted outside the vehicle. Thus, the box becomes more useful for military vehicles, wheel loaders, for autonomous vehicles in industry or for fire and rescue. The box can also be used for retrofitting of existing vehicles. In addition, it can be mounted on larger lawnmowers, which makes sense since as our owner Husqvarna is a large manufacturer of lawnmowers.