United Rentals and 5D Robotics, a leading provider of automation for the defense and energy sectors, have teamed up to bring the latest autonomous driving technology to United Rentals’ equipment operations. The 5D solution prevents collisions, enables multiple vehicles to follow a person or lead vehicle – a process known as wagon-training -- and allows operators to create and modify autonomous paths throughout a facility. The 5D solution is more accurate and reliable than GPS, the company said, and can function in rain, dust, snow and fog.

“Seeing this reliable, safe, autonomous vehicle technology function in our rental yards has been an eye opener,” said Helge Jacobsen, United Rentals’ vice president of operational excellence. “The equipment can move from station to station within the yard. The integration with 5D offers substantial opportunities to improve our efficiency and safety, as well as provide new analytical and mapping tools to our own branches and eventually to our customers.”

“5D has pioneered precision positioning and autonomous driving software that performs reliably in difficult, dynamic environments,” added David Bruemmer, 5D Robotics co-founder and CEO. “By adding our cross-platform plug and play modules, we can provide autonomy and enhance safety across United Rentals’ fleet. We are excited to expand the application of autonomous vehicles into the equipment rental space with the industry leader. Our two companies share a passion to bring this innovative technology to hundreds of United Rentals locations, and, ultimately, to their customers.”

Other technology companies ZTR Control Systems and SiTech RTD are joining United Rentals and 5D Robotics in the development of the new systems and solutions.

United Rentals, based in Stamford, Conn., is No. 1 on the RER 100. 5D Robotics is headquartered in Carlsbad, Calif.

To see the robotics system in action, look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ou9XEqN9agc