Torc Robotics Signs Pact to Acquire Canada’s Algolux
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Daimler Truck autonomous technology subsidiary Torc Robotics has signed an agreement to acquire Canadian artificial intelligence developer Algolux Inc.
Torc cited its interest in Algolux’s intellectual property and expertise in computer vision and machine learning as reasons for the acquisition. Perception technology is critical in enabling Torc’s autonomous trucking system to correctly identify objects in difficult visual conditions, such as low light, fog and bad weather, Torc noted in a news release.
In September, Algolux unveiled depth-perception software designed to increase vehicle safety in all lighting and weather conditions. Torc has been including Algolux software in its development.
Torc is focused on commercializing longhaul autonomous trucks in the United States. The two companies have been working together for more than a year on multiple perception concepts, and ways to improve detecting objects and estimating distances.
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From its facility in Albuquerque, N.M., Torc runs daily tests of its Freightliner Cascadia-based autonomous trucks on highways in New Mexico and Texas. Torc also has an engineering facility in Austin, Texas, as well as a technology and software development center in Stuttgart, Germany.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Algolux to the Torc family,” said Peter Vaughan Schmidt, Torc CEO. “Algolux’s technology, at the intersection of deep learning, computer vision and computational imaging, will help Torc strengthen key capabilities toward our commercialization of Level 4 autonomous trucking.”
“This acquisition brings together Algolux’s end-to-end AI stack, from photons to behavior, with Torc’s pioneering autonomous technology,” added Felix Heide, Algolux chief technical officer. “While many think of autonomous transportation as futuristic, this winning combination will help bring to market a commercially viable, safety-critical longhaul trucking application at scale.”
The acquisition will be finalized after both companies complete various pre-closing activities, including obtaining necessary approvals.
Founded in 2005, Torc was acquired by Daimler Truck AG in 2019. Torc is headquartered in Blacksburg, Va.
Headquartered in Montreal, Algolux has offices in Palo Alto, Calif., and Munich.
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