ICONET: reduced costs, diminished congestion, increased efficiency

Antwerp, 2-3 December 2019, ICONET project partners demonstrated technical developments of the project and the outputs of the living labs at the ICONET workshop.

The ICONET living labs concern the Internet of Things (IoT) enabled hub, IoT enabled corridor optimisation, e-commerce fulfilment, and warehousing among others.

The Physical Internet (PI) Hub Living Lab demonstrated how an IoT enabled hub will work. The objective of this living lab is aligned to the Port of Antwerp authority’s objective to increase share of rail (from 10% to 20% of traffic). The first use case is being created around an intermodal consolidation area within the deep-sea terminals at the port, where a range of different operators, including rail and shipping, must share data within the port environment. Each day the facility, on average, processes 130 trains a day, going to 32 destinations including terminals in Germany, Italy, and Austria, requiring the assembly of 25 discrete railway freight bundles. To create a digital twin of the system, the team is building a simulation of the existing port activity in this area. To do this, they are replicating how the operators use the infrastructure, how they move containers around the facility, and how they bundle and load wagons for train movement.

The demonstration aims to address the technical challenges in using IoT to capture data, encapsulate the logistical activity (bundle and use that data), route traffic, and optimise wagons, and make better use of the infrastructure including the 300km of rail track within the port. The commercial aim of the LL is to show achievement of reduced costs and congestion through new forms of IoT enabled routing within the hub and port facilities. Beyond the technical challenges, the LL must show how operators, many of whom are competitors, can be convinced to share data and collaborate for mutual benefit.

For more information about the other ICONET living labs and other project’s developments, please see the ICONET newsletter.