The trial will run from the second half of 2019 to early 2020 and passengers will simply leave their car in a well-lit, spacious ‘parking station’ close to the South Terminal entrance and – without handing over keys - the driverless robot will gently lift up the car and store it in a secure car park.
The system will also be connected to real-time flight information so the robot simply returns the vehicle to the parking station. The user then receives an SMS that the vehicle is ready and waiting for their arrival.
More details on Gatwick’s trial will be released prior to the trial launch in the coming weeks.
Guy Stephenson, Chief Commercial Officer, Gatwick Airport said:
“I’m delighted to have signed the contract for this new partnership with Stanley Robotics. The valet parking robots could revolutionize parking at Gatwick and may also become common-place at airports and other businesses across the world. The new service will be a convenient, personalized experience that will save passengers time, while also reducing vehicle emissions.
“With the potential to significantly increase car park capacity, this new automated system could also help the airport meet the increasing demand for air travel with only limited changes to our existing infrastructure.”
Stéphane Evanno, COO of Stanley Robotics, said:
"We are proud to be leading this innovation with Gatwick Airport, whose excellence in operations is recognized globally.
“The UK is of strategic importance to Stanley Robotics; the market provides exciting potential for our product. Thanks to this first partnership, we have established an office and team in the country to further this agenda.
“We are now working with Gatwick to offer visitors a world-class experience. We aim to completely reinvent the parking experience and create a seamless customer journey. In addition, we will be maximizing the efficient use of land for Gatwick and bringing them a sustainable solution, allowing us to envisage long-term collaboration.”
About Stanley Robotics
Stanley Robotics is a venture-backed company that was created in January 2015, and is headquartered in Paris, France. It is developing an automated valet parking service with robots that can move any vehicle and increase capacity in existing car parks by up to 50%, while revolutionizing the user experience.
The three founders, Clément Boussard (CEO), Aurélien Cord (CTO) and Stéphane Evanno (COO), all have previous experience in driverless technology (at top research institutes and with a world-class industrial corporation).