Sunday, February 25, 2024

Pipedream launches world’s first underground robotic delivery system

Peachtree Corners is one of the first smart cities in the United States that’s powered by real-world connected infrastructure and 5G. Recently, it made headlines by launching the world’s first below-ground autonomous robot delivery system in partnership with Pipedream, an underground logistics network that could transform the way goods are delivered. This innovative delivery system promises to bring consumers faster, more efficient, and cost-effective transportation options.

According to Pipedream and Curiosity Lab, Peachtree Corners was the first city to launch and install an underground logistics solution. By eliminating emissions and congestion issues that often accompany traditional delivery methods, Peachtree Corners is making strides toward a more sustainable future.

Pipedream’s system consists of totes, a temperature-controlled portal, autonomous robots, and underground infrastructure to deliver goods. The totes they use can fit almost all of the items ordered for delivery or pickup.

Their temperature-controlled portal can handle orders up to 40 pounds (18 kg), making it perfect for groceries or large meals. Their autonomous electric robot can go up to 40 mph (64 km/h), making for speedy delivery. And an underground infrastructure using off-the-shelf pipes for their rail network makes it easy for their robots to turn up to 90 degrees.

Covering almost one mile of distance, Pipedream’s installation at Peachtree Corners connects a busy shopping center to the heart of Curiosity Lab’s smart city innovation center. Members of the lab can now order food from several restaurants and select convenience items on-demand during peak lunch hours on weekdays.

Pipedream’s logistics network is responsible for the delivery of these items, utilizing a physical and underground infrastructure, which allows delivery robots to transport food, packages, groceries, household goods, and more in a fraction of the time. This innovative delivery system has several benefits for residents and businesses, including the elimination of carbon emissions, reduction of traffic congestion and noise pollution by taking driver miles off the road, minimizing vehicular accidents, and cheaper and faster delivery of goods.

“By bringing the delivery system underground and directly to the customer, Pipedream is showcasing the future of logistics technology that will not only bring added convenience to our residents and businesses but also reduce traffic, noise, and emissions from delivery vehicles on our roads,” said Brandon Branham, Assistant City Manager and CTO of Peachtree Corners.

“We are proud to be the first city in the world to implement and utilize Pipedream’s technology – leveraging its potential to transform logistics as we know it while delivering real commercial benefits and quality of life improvements in our community. The autonomous robot delivery system in Peachtree Corners is a continuation of what we’ve been able to achieve as an integrated smart city, utilizing smart infrastructure and the more innovative new technology to create a more sustainable, efficient, and equitable community for all.”

Curiosity Lab and the City of Peachtree Corners are working together to facilitate Pipedream’s underground railway that adds to the city’s world firsts and continues to highlight the city as setting the blueprint for smart cities across the United States. By embracing public-private partnerships and adopting a future-forward approach, Peachtree Corners is creating a blueprint for other cities to follow.

The installation at Curiosity Lab is the first of many to be incorporated in cities looking to future-proof logistics into their communities without needing net new legislation or regulation.

“Pipedream is about embracing innovation to put the needs of communities first, with this first real-world installation we have proven that underground delivery is not only possible today but easy to retrofit,” said Garrett McCurrach, CEO of Pipedream. “Underground delivery feels like something just teleported into your living room, and thanks to the leadership of Peachtree Corners in pushing forward and implementing smart city world-first technologies and infrastructure, this is a reality today. We’re excited for people to experience that here at the Curiosity Lab and are planning to bring it to many more cities over the next couple of years.”