SafeAI is an artificial intelligence startup that focuses on developing autonomous vehicle systems, particularly for the mining and construction industries. The goal is to improve efficiency, increase safety procedures, and grow productivity. Through the company’s technology, a worksite can be interconnected and optimized to help accelerate completion times and ensure greater safety around heavy equipment operations.
The San Jose, CA-based startup announced that it has secured $5 million investment in a funding round led by Autotech Ventures. Autotech Ventures was joined by other investments, such as Brick & Mortar Ventures, Embark Ventures, and Monta Vista Capital. Autotech Ventures are also value-added investors, which will help SafeAI secure introductions to major partners across construction and heavy machinery. The proceeds will be used to continue developing and expanding its artificial intelligence algorithms and capabilities.
SafeAI Press Release:
SafeAI emerged from stealth today with $5M in funding to accelerate development of their autonomous vehicle platform for the mining and construction equipment industry. SafeAI is partnered with Doosan Bobcat and is already operating an autonomous Bobcat skid steer loader at their test site in San Jose, CA. SafeAI is working closely with mining and construction (M&C) customers to deploy a safety-first, robust, and flexible autonomous platform across entire fleets of vehicles.
Recent developments in AI have advanced the capability of autonomous vehicles to a level of sophistication and capability now commonly seen on roads and highways. SafeAI is adapting these advances to meet the unique requirement of mining and construction sites. Large vehicle manufacturers have demonstrated that autonomy can improve safety, decrease costs, and increase productivity with early generation technology. Now, mining and construction customers require a technology that is designed for their needs.
SafeAI’s open, modular, and upgradable architecture will allow M&C customers to operate multiple types of equipment from various suppliers on one standard platform. The company’s solution allows customers to utilize an autonomous solution for specific tasks to immediately improve safety, reduce costs, reduce downtime, and increase productivity.
Deploying artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms in safety critical applications is one of the biggest challenges of AI. SafeAI is deploying a patent pending safety architecture that combines the best practices of autonomy and the latest artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to produce an innovative safety solution that ensures site-wide safety.
SafeAI is uniquely positioned to provide safe autonomous solutions to the end customers in mining and construction. The team includes technologists from Caterpillar, Ford and Apple who have long history of taking autonomous and AI technology to production. Bibhrajit Halder, SafeAI’s CEO, believes the technology has reached a tipping point to introduce what he calls “Autonomy 2.0” to the M&C industry.
“Advances in machine perception and a sharp decline in hardware costs are now enabling autonomous mining and construction vehicles to deploy at scale. What took 10 years of R&D, we’ve completed in less than a year,” said Dr. Halder. “Our team of experienced autonomous engineers are taking the latest technology from autonomous car projects and deploying them in the real world of mining and construction. These companies have already seen the benefits in safety and productivity and are eager to quickly deploy the next generation of Autonomy 2.0.”
The company announced the close of a $5 million dollar round led by Autotech Ventures with participation from Brick & Mortar Ventures, Embark Ventures, and existing investor Monta Vista Capital. Dr. Alexei Andreev, managing director at Autotech Ventures, joined the Board of Directors. Autotech Ventures and Brick & Mortar Ventures are both value-add investors for SafeAI with several strategic limited partners in the heavy vehicle and construction sectors, respectively. “We see a long horizon to passenger car autonomy,” stated Andreev. “We also believe that the amazing advances in technology and talent from those companies will spill over to off-highway use cases where the ROI has already been proven. In construction and mining, we observed a fundamental shift from OEM-led proprietary autonomy to end customer-led autonomy that better serves their unique needs.
SafeAI is revolutionizing traditional mining and construction sites with the latest in AI technology for autonomous vehicles to improve safety, increase productivity, and expand the reach of autonomy software to the entire industry. With SafeAI Technology, all parts of a worksite will be interconnected and optimized, accelerating the time to completion. Heavy equipment operation will be efficient and safe.