Songjiang introduces automatic cleaning vehicles to sweep streets in the district

The world’s first unmanned cleaning vehicles have been introduced to sweep streets in G60 Corridor in Songjiang District.

First put into experiment on March 20, the team consists of a 6-meter long medium-sized cleaning truck and a 3-meter long cleaning van.

Developed by Shanghai Xiantu Smart Intelligence Co Ltd, which is based in the TUS-Caohejing Sci-tech Park, the new vehicles look just like the common cleaning vehicles in street.

The vehicles begin their work each day at 2am in the morning. They would slowly move out the parking space, scan the road conditions including the traffic lights and barriers and then start sweeping the roads.

After cleaning, they would automatically dump the wastes at a designated spot and return to their parking lot.

The vehicles have been equipped with radars, sensors and cameras. Since the sensors cost less than 300,000 yuan (US$48,000), mass production in the future is feasible, said Ye Qing, co-founder and chief architect of Xiantu.

Unmanned environment cleaning has huge commercial value, Ye added. The work is rather repetitive and the operation time is in the middle of night or early in the morning when most people are off the road. It is estimated that the technology could save a lot of human labor for the cleaning industry.