Volvo Trucks testing autonomous vehicle to transport goods

Volvo Trucks’ electric autonomous vehicle Vera is to transport goods from a logistics centre to a port terminal in Gothenburg, Sweden, it has been announced.

The assignment is part of a new collaboration between Volvo Trucks and Danish logistics company DFDS. It aims to implement Vera in a real application, enabling a connected system for a continuous flow of goods.

Vera was designed for repetitive assignments in logistics centres, factories and ports. It is suited for short distances, transporting large volumes of goods with high precision.

The autonomous system is monitored by an operator in a control tower who is also responsible for the transport.

“Now we have the opportunity to implement Vera in an ideal setting and further develop her potential for other similar operations,” said Mikael Karlsson, vice president autonomous solutions at Volvo Trucks.

The aim is to implement a connected system consisting of several Vera vehicles monitored by a control room. The purpose is to enable a seamless and constant flow responsive to demands on greater efficiency, flexibility and sustainability.

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. 

Vera will be further developed in terms of technology, operations management and infrastructure adaptations, before it can be fully operational. Moreover, safety precautions will be taken to meet societal requirements for a safe path towards autonomous transports.

“Autonomous transport, with low noise levels and zero exhaust emissions have an important role to play in the future of logistics and will benefit both business and society,” added Karlsson.

“We see this collaboration as an important start and want to drive progress in this area. Vera may have a speed limit, but we don’t. Testing has already started and we intend to implement the solution within the coming years.”

Vera - Volvo autonomous truck
Dan Parton
Dan Parton
Dan Parton is a former editor of Truck & Driver, the UK’s biggest selling truck magazine. He is now writes for The Van Expert and The Truck Expert.

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