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Honda tests Autonomous Work Vehicle at solar construction site

by Sion Geschwindt
Honda tests autonomous work vehicle at solar construction site

Honda has successfully tested its prototype Autonomous Work Vehicle (AWV) after a month-long trial at a Black & Veatch solar construction site in New Mexico, USA.

The fully-electric AWV, which is either autonomous or remote controlled, was used to transport construction materials, water, and other supplies to preset destinations.

The company states that the 721 kg AWV can carry payloads of up to 399 kg with a range of 27.9 miles (45 km) and can run for eight hours on a single charge. 

The AWV uses GPS, radar, LiDAR, and 3D cameras for remote monitoring and easy navigation.

Kenton Williams, US project lead for the Honda AWV, said: “With our test partner, Black & Veatch, Honda was able to demonstrate the performance of our rugged all-electric Autonomous Work Vehicle prototype in a large-scale construction environment.

“We believe the Honda AWV has the potential to bring greater efficiencies, higher levels of safety and better environmental performance to the construction industry, and to other industries seeking an autonomous off-road solution.”

Mario Azar, president of Black & Veatch’s global power business, said: “Black & Veatch’s pursuit of construction innovation and safety on job sites has led us to this relationship with Honda.

“With our leading market position in solar power, the testing of this new autonomous work vehicle aligns with our focus on advancing the industry through new and innovative ways to work at project sites.”

Honda believes the AWV will be capable of providing a wide range of services to a variety of industries that need a rugged off-road autonomous solution, especially where workforce constraints and safety concerns make other solutions impractical.

The ability to operate autonomously – or via remote control – and carry large payloads, along with the potential to add attachments and tools, makes the Honda AWV a suitable platform for many work environments, it said.

Honda has not announced commercialisation plans for the AWV, but continues to advance the platform through field testing.

Image credit: Honda

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