Danish logistics and international shipping giant, DFDS, has been combining drones and AI to streamline terminal operations.
DFDS provides transportation services, supply chain solutions and warehouse management, handling millions of trailers every year.
The company has been exploring the potential for drones to be used to improve freight inspections at their harbor terminals. Locating individual trailers has long been a pain point and an unavoidably manual task. But with increased scale and ever more complex and demanding supply chains, developing a better method was necessary.
Working with DJI’s channel partners & local solution providers
Drone use has been on the rise in the logistics industry, but DFDS required an original solution to simplify terminal freight management.
First, the company consulted UAS Denmark. That led to a partnership with drone software developer Lorenz Technology.
Working with DJI’s Matrice 210 and its onboard SDK, Lorenz Technology had the access needed to develop a customized solution. Also important was the payload: DJI’s Zenmuse XT2, which has visual and thermal sensors capable of supporting AI features, such as identifying objects.
We see great potential in the use of drones in our terminals, and we are convinced that with the trailer plugin from Lorenz Technology, the data collected, and other related drone services, wecan optimize operations dramatically for the benefit of employees, customers, and the environment.” – DFDS’s Senior Project Manager Mads Bentzen Billesø, who managed the drone implementation program.
The solution developed by Lorenz Technology allowed the DJI drones to fly autonomously around the terminal, pinpoint and relay the exact locations of each and every trailer by recognizing their unique IDs.
As a result, truck drivers could quickly find their load in the terminal, saving time and streamlining the logistics process for all parties.
Beyond that, the ability to identify and confirm the position of trailers saved on average 15 minutes during loading and discharging trailers from vessels. In turn, there were significant fuel savings and a reduction of CO2 emissions, manpower and costs.
“At DJI, we invest in building SDKs that enable industry experts, such as Lorenz Technology, to create
unique solutions for specific industries and solve real-world business problems,” said Jan Gasparic,
Director of Strategic Partnerships at DJI.
“There are so many opportunities for SDKs across a wide array of sectors that it is almost impossible for us to unlock their full potential ourselves. These efforts support DJI’s goal of providing comprehensive platforms of the future.”
You can read DJI’s full case study, Leveraging Drone Automation for Terminal Inspections, here.