Picture Credit: TuSimple
Welcome to the August issue of “Across Logistics” Innovation News Release, where we are presenting you the latest innovative technologies and important news in logistics that happened over the last month.
Here is the list of topics in this issue:
- UPS Invests In Autonomous Trucking Company TuSimple, Tests Self-Driving Trucks
- Loadsmart Completes First-Ever Automated Dispatch and Delivery with Starsky Robotics’ Autonomous Truck
- World’s Largest Container Ship Completes First Voyage From Asia to Europe
- Maersk Technology Team Approaches 3,000 Staff as Transformation of the Shipping Giant Continues
- Seegrid Celebrates 2 Million Autonomous Miles Driven Without a Single Personnel Safety Incident
- project44 Secures Amazon and Walmart as Customers
Autonomous Trucks Announcements
UPS Invests In Autonomous Trucking Company TuSimple, Tests Self-Driving Trucks
This month, UPS Ventures has made a minority investment in autonomous driving company TuSimple. Together, both companies are testing self-driving trucks on a route in Arizona to determine whether the vehicles can improve service and efficiency in the UPS network. This is an extension of the ongoing commercial relationship between UPS and TuSimple in which UPS has purchased transportation services from TuSimple.
The work with autonomous driving company TuSimple began with the goal of helping UPS better understand the requirements for Level 4 Autonomous trucking in its network. Throughout the ongoing tests, UPS has been providing truckloads of goods for TuSimple to carry on a North American Freight Forwarding route between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona. The company initiated self-driving service in May 2019, with a driver and engineer in the vehicle. TuSimple and UPS monitor distance and time the trucks travel autonomously, safety data and transport time.
“UPS is committed to developing and deploying technologies that enable us to operate our global logistics network more efficiently. While fully autonomous, driverless vehicles still have development and regulatory work ahead, we are excited by the advances in braking and other technologies that companies like TuSimple are mastering. All of these technologies offer significant safety and other benefits that will be realized long before the full vision of autonomous vehicles is brought to fruition – and UPS will be there, as a leader implementing these new technologies in our fleet,” – commented UPS Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer, Scott Price.
Loadsmart Completes First-Ever Automated Dispatch and Delivery with Starsky Robotics’ Autonomous Truck
Loadsmart and Starsky Robotics were able to automatically dispatch an autonomous truck to haul freight; having successfully priced, tendered and booked via Loadsmart and then picked up and delivered the shipment using Starsky’s self-driving technology. The integration of Loadsmart’s AI-powered pricing and load matching technology with Starsky’s API meant no human intervention was required.
Loadsmart was able to connect their network of customers with Starsky’s fleet of regular and self-driving trucks by integrating Loadsmart’s Automated Dispatch API with Starsky’s Hutch API. As a result of the partnership, Starsky was able to dispatch its trucks automatically without human intervention, while Loadsmart could expand its ability to automate the shipping process from quoting, booking to delivery to help its clients move more with less.
“Today, for the first time ever, the advances that seem obvious for the ride-sharing services are coming to trucking. It’s not uncommon for a traditional trucking company to have 5 full-time employees involved in dispatching each truck for each load. By integrating e-brokers like Loadsmart, we are eliminating all back-office human intervention and making the shipment process seamless, while focusing on ensuring the safety of driverless trucks. With Starsky’s Hutch API, which was also announced today, we will be able to autonomously dispatch autonomous loads on a regular basis,” added Stefan Seltz-Axmacher, CEO and founder of Starsky Robotics.
Related News and Articles:
Container Shipping News
World’s Largest Container Ship Completes First Voyage From Asia to Europe
MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company announced that MSC Gülsün, the world’s largest container ship, has arrived in Europe after completing its landmark maiden voyage from the north of China. MSC Gülsün is the first of a new class of 23,000+ TEU* vessels to be added in 2019-2020 to the global shipping network of MSC.
At some 400 meters long and more than 60 meters wide, MSC Gülsün has a record-size capacity for a container ship: 23,756 TEU. Bigger ships generally emit less CO2 per container carried, helping companies which move goods on MSC’s services between Asia and Europe to lower the carbon footprint of their supply chains. The vessel is also equipped with more than 2,000 refrigerated containers, boosting the trade of food, drink, pharmaceutical and other chilled and frozen items between Asia and Europe.
Maersk Technology Team Approaches 3,000 Staff as Transformation of the Shipping Giant Continues
In its Q2 2019 interim report, Maersk has highlighted its ongoing commitment to a large scale digital transformation of the company. According to the report, this process supports the goal of replacing core legacy systems and digitizing the carrier’s operations by building up a technology team that now numbers nearly 3,000 people.
Initiated in 2016, the current Maersk’s corporate transformation considers technology as a key aspect of the process following the separation of the company’s energy-related businesses to focus on container shipping, ports, and logistics. This restructuring was coupled with a renewed vision of the company as an integrated logistics operation, rather than a shipping or energy operator.
“Given the importance of technology for achieving our vision, over the last three years, we have built a new technology team. We are growing our technology team (designers, software developers, AI experts, automation engineers, analytics experts, etc.) rapidly, to ensure we have the expertise and talent to build solutions ourselves at speed. We now employ almost 3,000 people in our technology team,” – the report states.
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Other Logistics Innovation News
Seegrid Celebrates 2 Million Autonomous Miles Driven Without a Single Personnel Safety Incident
Seegrid, the leader in self-driving industrial vehicles for materials handling, today announced that its vision guided vehicles (VGVs) reached two million production miles at customer sites without a single personnel safety incident. Having reached one million miles just over one year earlier, in April 2018, the “two million” milestone is also a marker for the company’s rapid growth.
“We are incredibly proud that our VGVs autonomously drove an additional one million miles in just 506 days. Our safety record speaks to our commitment to moving material as safely, effectively, and efficiently as possible with unmatched technology, expertise, and passion,” commented Seegrid CEO Jim Rock.
project44 Secures Amazon and Walmart as Customers
project44, the Chicago-based visibility solution provider, has secured major contracts with Amazon and Walmart, two of the world’s largest retailers, according to FreightWaves report.
Both retailers have already put a lot of effort into positioning the inventory where their customers can access it, and have used their leverage to drive efficiencies in their own suppliers’ operations. Consequently, Amazon and Walmart’s on-time, in-full (OTIF) requirements are some of the most stringent in the retail industry.
In addition to that, project44 tracked more than two million shipments for Amazon last year. Also, according to a Walmart memo to its contracted less-than-truckload (LTL) carriers seen by FreightWaves, Walmart is moving all of its LTL capacity to project44’s visibility solution.