Honda Introduces Prototype EV Autonomous Mower

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Honda has introduced a prototype electric Autonomous Work Mower, a battery-powered zero-turn riding mower. The mower features a teaching mode for manual operations and playback for autonomous operation. Proof of concept testing was undertaken with a leading commercial landscaping company in the U.S. and is now looking for pilot program participants for the 2024 season.

The new Autonomous Work Mower prototype will be on display at the Kentucky Exposition Center from October 17-20 during the Equip Exposition.

“The prototype Honda AWM combines industry leading cutting performance and operator comfort with high location accuracy and obstacle detection. It is designed to help improve the efficiency of lawn care and landscape maintenance companies while offering an eco-conscious solution with zero-emissions. Capable of operating in manual or autonomous mode, when manually operated, the Honda AWM learns the mowing routes and patterns set by the operator. In autonomous operation, the AWM reproduces these routes and patterns, which can free up workers’ time to focus on more high-value tasks. The all-electric AWM supports Honda’s global goal of achieving carbon neutrality – net zero emissions – for all products and corporate activities by 2050.” –Honda press release

While in “Teaching mode,” the prototype autonomous mower is operated by a driver who mows a section or area of grass as normal. From that point forward, the mower can do it on its own with “Playback mode” using the mapped route it created during Teaching. This would allow, for example, a single operator to program the machine during the first week of mowing and then have the mower replay that while the operator trims hedges or edges as the mower works independently. The mower includes omnidirectional sensing with radar and LiDAR to detect new obstacles during operation. It can vary traction control and other systems to account for terrain changes and blade rotation speed is linked to the speed of the vehicle for a consistent cut.

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