We are a proud partner of the Living Lab Autonomous Transport Zeeland project. This project develops an open innovation system in which logistics companies, technology providers for autonomous vehicles, road authorities and knowledge institutions jointly innovate and experiment with autonomous vehicles with mixed traffic in real-life logistics operations and on public roads.
The Living Lab Autonomous Transport project is made possible in part by the European Fund for Regional Development, the State and the Province of Zeeland, within the framework of OPZuid.
This is innovative and has not been carried out in the Netherlands before. The Living Lab focuses on a wide range of innovations that are required to be able to use the vehicles in a logistics operation safely and cost-effectively: higher speeds, interaction with other logistics systems, fast data connections, recognizing a wide variety of traffic situations, remotely management, etc. Zeeland has the space and logistical setting to conduct these kinds of experiments. The innovation system is open because other technology companies (for example Navya and Einride) will also be given the opportunity to conduct experiments in the near future. Technology providers that supply components (Wi-Fi, 5G, radar, artificial intelligence) can also participate. These now fall outside the scope of the application.
The Living Lab is important for Dutch technology companies such as VDL and Terberg, which are global leaders in the development of autonomous vehicles for logistics operations. With a Living Lab in the Netherlands, they can accelerate their R&D and bring foreign partners to the Netherlands for further development of the technology for driving autonomous vehicles in mixed traffic.
Logistics Service Providers
The project is also essential for logistics service providers in West Brabant and Zeeland that are active in road transport. Studies indicate that the introduction of autonomous transport will lead to a cost reduction of 47% (and thus lead to pressure on prices) and that technology companies can take over a significant part of the existing business of logistics service providers by driving autonomous vehicles. . The project strengthens the innovation system in West Brabant and Zeeland by involving at least 20 SME logistics service providers in the experiments and actively researching the business impact of autonomous transport with them. They are assisted in developing strategies and new business propositions with which they can strengthen or protect their position in the chain. In addition, it strengthens the collaboration between road authorities, logistics service providers and technology companies: together they can guarantee road safety with autonomous vehicles and identify the requirements that must be imposed on the systems to allow them to be used on public roads.
Experiments and development steps
The following experiments and development steps are taken in the Living Lab:
- Pilot Autonomous in mixed traffic terminal operation: Deployment of an autonomous vehicle at the terminal of Kloosterboer in Vlissingen between quay and container stack.
- Pilot Autonomous mixed traffic on public roads: On the route of MSP Onions and Kloosterboer, an autonomous vehicle will be deployed in mixed traffic on public roads aimed at identifying traffic risks, technology improvement and safety measures.
- Design of operational and safety cases for other mixed traffic situations: elaboration of autonomous applications at Verbrugge, OCT, Mepavex with other mixed traffic situations with more normal traffic and weak road users.
- Risks and safety: risks are identified, assessed and mitigated together with road authorities to enable current and new experiments.
- SME Valorisation & Communication: Exploration and analysis of the impact of autonomous transport on the business operations and business model of 20 logistics SMEs.