DFDS has entered into a collaboration with Volvo Trucks concerning their electric, connected and autonomous vehicle Vera. The aim is to develop and test an integrated solution for transporting goods from a logistics centre to a port terminal in Gothenburg, Sweden, using Vera.
The collaboration will implement Vera in a real application, enabling a connected system for a continuous flow of goods, from a DFDS logistics centre to an APM terminal in the port, for distribution across the world.
In 2018, Volvo Trucks presented its first electric, connected and autonomous solution, designed for repetitive assignments in logistics centres, factories and ports. Vera is suited for short distances, transporting large volumes of goods with high precision.
"Now we have the opportunity to implement Vera in an ideal setting and further develop her potential for other similar operations," says Mikael Karlsson, Vice President Autonomous Solutions at Volvo Trucks.
The collaboration with DFDS is a first step towards implementing Vera in a real transport assignment on pre-defined public roads in an industrial area.
"We want to be at the forefront of connected, autonomous transportation. This collaboration will help us develop an efficient, flexible and sustainable long-term solution for receiving autonomous vehicles arriving at our port terminal gates, benefitting our customers, the environment and our business" says Torben Carlsen, CEO of DFDS.
The autonomous transport solution will be further developed in terms of technology, operations management and infrastructure adaptations, before it can be fully operational. Moreover, necessary safety precautions will be taken to meet societal requirements for a safe path towards autonomous transports.
Facts about the Vera project:
- The assignment is to move containers from a DFDS logistics centre in Gothenburg to an APM terminal in the port according to needed capacity.
- The autonomous system is monitored by an operator in a control tower who is also responsible for the transport.
- The solution is suited for repetitive flows with a maximum speed of 40 km/h.
- Infrastructure adaptations are part of the scope in the implementation of the total transport system, including automated gates at the terminals.
- Volvo Trucks and DFDS are main partners but several actors are involved in implementing Vera's first assignment.
- The initiative is carried out with support from the Swedish Innovation Agency Vinnova, the Swedish Transport Administration and the Swedish Energy Agency through the Strategic vehicle research and innovation programme FFI.
Torben Carlsen, CEO of DFDS, talks about DFDS' role in Volvo Trucks' autonomous transport project and the strong partnership that the two companies share: Watch the video here
Follow Vera's first assignment from logistics center to terminal and learn more about Volvo Trucks' autonomous transport solution: Watch the video from Volvo Trucks' YouTube channel here