Smart containers are one way to create a more efficient, safer and more sustainable shipping supply chain. These are much like regular containers, but are pre installed with sensors that are connected to a network. These sensors can collect real time data about everything from the temperature inside a container to its exact location thanks to GPS tracking.
Collecting such data can help to optimise the supply chain. Sensor data provides hyper-accurate information about the location of a container, allowing for optimised fleet management that results in less repositioning and more efficient use of fuel. Often, energy is wasted on shipping and repositioning empty containers: estimates suggest up to $20 billion a year is spent on this activity that leads to unnecessary fuel consumption. Research from the Boston Consulting Group has previously estimated that avoiding empty container shipping “for carrier-specific reasons” could allow the industry to reduce carbon emissions by six million tons per year.
Making smarter shipping containers
There has traditionally been a low diploma of differentiation between container manufacturers. Since the late 1990s, the enterprise has transitioned from being tremendously fragmented to extensively consolidated. Chinese producers now dominate the market, accounting for extra than 97% of international container manufacturing extent (Source: Berg Insight).
Mobile science advances imply that connectivity for man or woman containers can now be supplied at a lifelike cost. Internet of Things (IoT) technology, coupled with this cellular connectivity, has made it viable for containers to turn out to be intelligent. These developments are enabling logistics gear producers such as CIMC to differentiate via supplying a wider vary of value-added services, becoming customers’ desires for extra superior traceability, manage and security.
Smart containers on the new Silk Road
The historical Silk Road was once no longer one single highway, however a quantity of routes linking China to Europe, firstly solid with the aid of merchants the usage of pack animals and carts. Those hard-worn paths are nevertheless in use today, although the caravans have been changed with TEU delivery containers journeying alongside road, rail and waterways.
The People’s Republic of China (PRC) now bills for about 12% of international merchandise alternate (Source: World Trade Organization). The persevering with significance of the ancient Silk Road in transporting these items is mirrored in China’s One Belt One Road Initiative, added in 2013 in order to speed up financial increase from the Asia Pacific area thru Central and Eastern Europe.
This improvement approach (renamed The Belt and Road Initiative in 2016) was once proposed by using the Chinese authorities to bridge monetary and technological gaps, with a focal point on connectivity and cooperation between China and Eurasian nations in the land-based Silk Road Economic Belt (SREB) and alongside the Maritime Silk Road (MSR).
As items journey from China throughout more than one international locations and continents, it has traditionally been hard to song shipments or to manage and assurance transport of extra touchy items with necessities such as an unbroken bloodless chain. Loss and theft, alongside with customs and port authority tactics can additionally slow down shipments.
In order to discover new options to these long-standing problems, CIMC hooked up its CIMC HiTech subsidiary to advance and installation sensible applied sciences for integration into the mother or father company’s products. While it at first targeted completely on clever transport containers, CIMC HiTech is now increasing its center of attention to tackle all logistics equipment.