Domino’s pizza chain have built an autonomous delivery robot with tech startup Marathon Targets. The Dominos Robotic Unit, or DRU, is making a push to be one of the first fast food chains to have an autonomous delivery service.
The Australian startup is more famous for its autonomous robot that helped improve the accuracy of the U.S. Marine Corps shooters by 104 per cent after two days’ practice. Since 2007, the company now based in Marrickville, Sydney, has sold hundreds of its autonomous robots to defence forces on four continents. Each cost about $250.000 each.
About the delivery robot, DRU, the company says that it is packed with thousands of dollars worth of military robotics tech, but the mission is more peaceful this time. The DRU has to make sure that the fresh pizza is delivered in time. Each DRU is $30.000 so for sure they’ll become easy targets for thieves. We can only hope that the new delivery robots are electroshock protected, just in case.
The four-wheel delivery robot can carry hot and cold foods at the same time. Drinks in the cold container and pizza in the hot one, at a top speed of 18km/h. That’s faster than the average speed in central London on Friday evening! Here is a video from Domino Pizza, detailing on the evolution of the delivery robot to its final stage.
The DRU delivery robot is still in early stages. So far, Domino Pizza worked hand in hand with the Queensland Department of Transport to meet all the requirements before “Chappy” is set loose on the streets.
The DRU’s first deliveries were made on restricted streets that the local transport authorities approved in advance. If you are thinking about snagging some fresh pizza, forget about. The robot is locked, and when it arrives at the destination, the customer has to enter an unlocking code that opens the storage.
The delivery robot uses LIDAR, the same technology the autonomous cars use to identify the surrounding environment. It also has a built-in GPS tracking technology that syncs with Google Maps. A similar tech we have seen in London at Starship Technologies. Starship is also making a delivery robot soon to hit the streets of London.
A spokesman from Domino Pizza says that the company is working with “global partners” to ensure that the delivery robot meets the needed requirements. The robots are going to hit the local stores within the next year, but it could take up to two years before the pizza delivery robots will become a regular sight on the streets of your city.