Unfortunately, only partially utilized or completely empty cargo areas are a real thing in trucks, semitrailers, or trailers. According to the Federal Motor Transport Authority, there were over 150 million empty trips in Germany in 2020 alone. But empty loading areas are not the only problem in the logistics industry; there is also a lack of drivers to handle and more transport freight.
To counteract the problem, Continental has developed a digital solution: An AI-based load space detection system. Quickly and precisely, the innovative technology can calculate the remaining capacity for the cargo space. The aim is to achieve more trips with full capacity utilization.
Using the smartphone to get to the full capacity of the hold
Using the AI-based load space detection is very simple and timesaving. Once the load has been secured, the user’s own smartphone is used to scan the load compartment and take a picture of the entire loading area – our app precisely detects the free floor space. The image is then uploaded to our Continental cloud, where the calculation is performed by an AI algorithm developed by us. This determines the capacity still available in the cargo area. The driver then has the option of editing the result manually or adding additional information before the data is forwarded to the dispatching software. The whole process takes just a few seconds.
Together with the corresponding weight data from the intelligent tachograph or the fleet management system interface, the dispatcher can analyze the current load in an optimal way. Additional loads can be better coordinated and planned accordingly.
Trailer Capacity Assessment: Calculating free loading space using smartphone images and algorithms in the cloud. Photo: Continental.
More sustainability and efficiency for the logistics industry
In addition to the data on loading capacity, the dispatcher also has the routes of the respective trucks listed in the dispatching software. This information supports the coordination and planning of possible stopovers in order to load the truck ideally.
Our solution offers fleet managers support in ensuring optimal utilization of their transport capacities and in making their fleets more efficient. In addition, fuel and CO2 can be saved for the vehicles.
With the option of digital load space recording, we are taking a big step toward the future and creating more sustainability and digitization in the logistics industry.