Today, freight transport is a highly automated business. However, even with the best planning, useful space in by lorries and containers is often left empty.
But that could all be a thing of the past, thanks to Dr Mario Neugebauer and Dr Jürgen Anke from the German company Ubigrate, who have developed a system that can make better use of the empty space.
Their Load-Volume Tracking (LoVoTrack) system uses ultrasonic sensors, mobile communication and satellite navigation to obtain information on the status of the space available in lorries and containers.
‘We installed sensors on the ceiling of each container that continuously monitor the available empty space. This information, together with the precise location of the truck, is transmitted via a cellular phone network to a central server that follows the whole fleet of trucks in the transportation company,’ said Neugebauer.
It is then relatively easy to put more freight into a lorry or container when space is available.
An early prototype of the system has been developed in collaboration with T-Systems/DHL.