Suzano begins testing autonomous truck for moving pulp at Port of Itaqui in Brazil, also testing technology at Portocel in Aracruz; vehicle is fully controlled by AI, uses cameras and sensors integrated with robotic systems to move cellulose

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December 6, 2023 (press release) –

The vehicle, fully controlled by artificial intelligence, uses cameras and sensors integrated with various robotic systems to move cellulose 

Suzano began testing an autonomous truck for moving pulp at the Port of Itaqui, located in São Luís (MA), the first port terminal in Maranhão to use this technology. These tests are taking place simultaneously at Portocel (a company between Suzano and Cenibra), in Aracruz (ES).  

The trucks are fully controlled by artificial intelligence and use cameras and sensors integrated into various robotic systems. The System employs a Proportional Integral Derivative (PID) approach, resulting in efficient commands for acceleration, braking and steering. This approach not only optimizes fuel consumption, reducing operating costs by approximately 17% (source: 2018 University of Kentucky - An Economic Feasibility Assessment for Adoption of_Autonomous Field Machinery in Row Crop Production), but also minimizes environmental impact, in line with company's sustainability strategy. 

Autonomous vehicle configuration not only improves operational efficiency and safety, but also offers advantages over conventional operations. With a standard reaction time of one tenth of a second, the autonomous system surpasses human capacity, essential for dealing with simultaneous events in emergencies. In addition to the benefits mentioned, autonomous operation provides continuous operational efficiency, minimizing losses and positively impacting productivity. The project considers the use of mechanical horses adapted for internal transport of cellulose, the main cargo handled by the company. 

The technology in the vehicles, developed by the company Lume Robotics, covers computer vision, mapping, localization, route planning, decision making, control and central operations. The tests include internal movements, from the transport of cellulose cargo to sub-processes such as ship boarding, barge unloading and movements in yards, warehouses and docks. 

“This technology is aligned with the company's strategy of seeking innovative and increasingly sustainable solutions for our operations. The initiative also reinforces Suzano's ongoing commitment to contributing to the development of the state of Maranhão. We expect that this solution will not only provide greater safety and operational efficiency, but also strengthen the culture of innovation at Porto do Itaqui, resulting in significant gains for the business and management, in addition to reinforcing environmental sustainability through a operation with lower fuel consumption", concludes Arnaldo Miranda, Port Manager at Suzano. 

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