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The future of transport, according to Volvo

October 18, 2018
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Volvo Trucks has presented a new transport solution that will contribute to a much more efficient, safer and cleaner future. 

“The full potential of the transport industry is yet to be seen. Everything suggests that the global need for transportation will continue to significantly increase in the coming decade. If we are to meet this demand in a sustainable and efficient way, we must find innovative solutions,” says Claes Nilsson, president of Volvo Trucks.

“The transport system we are developing can be an important complement to today’s solutions and can help meet many of the challenges faced by society, transport companies and transport buyers,” he adds.

Volvo Trucks’s future transport solution makes use of autonomous electric vehicles, linked to a cloud service and a transport control centre, for regular and repetitive tasks characterised by relatively short distances, large volumes of goods and high delivery precision. Transport operations between logistics hubs are typical examples. As tractor units, they are compatible with existing trailers.

The vehicles are designed to locate their current position within centimetres, monitor in detail, analyse what is happening with other road users, and then respond with high accuracy. Vehicles that operate on the same route cooperate to create optimal flow.

The transport control centre continuously monitors the progress of the transport and keeps an accurate watch of each vehicle’s position, the batteries’ charge, load content, service requirements and several other parameters.

“Our system can be seen as an extension of the advanced logistics solutions that many industries already apply. Since we use autonomous vehicles with no exhaust emissions and low noise, their operation can take place at any time whether day or night.

“The solution employs existing road infrastructure and load carriers, making it easier to recoup costs, thus allowing for integration with existing operations,” comments Mikael Karlsson, vice president Autonomous Solutions.

FOCUS on Transport and Logistics is one of the oldest and most respected transport and logistics publications in southern Africa.

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