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The Digital Transformation of Mercedes-Benz Vans: Leveraging artificial intelligence in last-mile logistics

Vlad Poptamas

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PRNewsfoto/Mercedes-Benz
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

– Future Transportation team of Mercedes-Benz Vans develops AI-powered cargo sensor system.

– With computer vision and AI the new Cargo Recognition and Organization System (CoROS) is able to optimize the delivery process of logistic companies.

 

Mercedes-Benz Vans is transforming itself into a provider of holistic transportation solutions with the help of new digital product offerings. The Future Transportation team of Mercedes-Benz Vans developed a new AI-powered cargo sensor system to address the growing demands of e-commerce and last-mile delivery.

The growing popularity of e-commerce has led to high revenues for delivery service providers but has also put strain on their ability to manage this increase of packages and deliver them under tight deadlines. To meet these challenges for its commercial van customers, Mercedes-Benz Vans is developing next-generation in-vehicle cargo systems powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning. These new technologies automate cargo management, decrease package handling and improve delivery times, allowing logistics companies to deliver more packages with greater speed, transparency and efficiency.

The Cargo Recognition and Organization System, known as CoROS equips the new Mercedes-Benz Sprinter with an array of cameras that automatically scan and track packages as they enter and exit the vehicle. Leveraging computer vision and AI, CoROS identifies, scans, and records packages as they are brought into the vehicle and recommends the optimal loading position based on the package’s size and final destination. CoROS continuously monitors the cargo space throughout a driver’s route and tracks any changes to a package’s location if a sharp turn or road bump causes the cargo to shift, or if the driver reorganizes their cargo throughout the day. At each stop, the system automatically looks up the customer’s order and directs the driver to that customer’s packages via LEDs installed on shelves and throughout the cargo space. CoROS also reduces time spent by the driver searching for the right packages at each customer stop, enabling faster and more reliable deliveries.

The system provides additional benefits through real-time status updates for fleet managers and customers on a driver’s progress and the status of individual packages, reducing potential customer frustration regarding uncertain delivery times. This data also provides valuable insight into a fleet’s performance, allowing fleet managers and dispatchers to forecast delays, optimize process operations, and address areas of concern.

Launched as proof of concept at IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hanover, Germany, it will be now presented at Fleet Forward Conference in San Francisco, October 9.

At home in a garage in Menlo Park, the Future Transportation team of Mercedes-Benz Vans uses user-centered design and rapid prototyping to innovate new products. Its interdisciplinary team combines Mercedes-Benz’s decades of expertise in the commercial vehicle sector with fresh perspectives from a variety of industries. Leveraging the innovative Silicon Valley network, the Mercedes-Benz Vans Future Transportation explores new ventures and opportunities in the changing transportation ecosystem, and considers how emerging technologies will shape the future landscape of logistics and mobility. As part of Mercedes-Benz Research & Development North America headquartered in Sunnyvale the team is part of the global R&D network of Daimler AG.

Further information about Mercedes-Benz is available online:
www.mbrdna.com and www.media.daimler.com

Editor - With a passion photo photography, webdesign and content, it made sense for me to also integrate news editing and press release publishing. I am also passionate about the car industry, so you will surely find some exciting news reporting from my side about the automotive industry.

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Automotive

BMW of Springfield hosts New York Yankee Mariano Rivera at the Reveal of Lightning M4

Vlad Poptamas

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Serial Entrepreneur and CEO of Celebrity Motor Car Company Tom Maoli and baseball legend New York Yankee Mariano Rivera
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Worlds collide at BMW of Springfield when the New York Yankee legend stepped foot into Tom Maoli’s Celebrity Motor Car Company dealership. Baseball legend Mariano Rivera, played 19 seasons in the MLB for the New York Yankees, from 1995 to 2013 is known for being the greatest relief pitcher of all time and pitched in for a great cause!

On December 16, 2018 Mariano came to support Tom for the unveiling of the “Lightning M4,” which is owned by his son, Mariano Rivera Jr. Celebrity Motor Car Company’s BMW of Springfield hosted the reveal of the custom designed BMW “Lightning M4.” Rivera’s vehicle was showcased and unveiled by designer Corsa Auto Design and installer Moemodz.

The event was a “HOME RUN.”

All proceeds of the event went to the baseball legend’s charity which was St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children in New York City.

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Automotive

CCC™ X Data Exchange Powers Telematics Innovations for State Auto

Vlad Poptamas

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Photo source: repairerdrivennews.com
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

CCC Information Services Inc. and its affiliates (CCC) announced today that State Automobile Mutual Insurance Company (State Auto) is live on the CCC™ X data exchange, activating a broad range of telematics capabilities in support of the insurer’s vision to transform the policyholder experience through innovation. State Auto is using CCC X to connect with CCC ecosystem partners, including a major OEM, and to deliver usage-based insurance (UBI) programs and telematics-enabled claims, making it the first insurer in the industry to integrate crash event data into their CCC ONE® claims workflow. The CCC and State Auto relationship spans the carrier’s Personal and Commercial lines of business. State Auto is a leading digital provider of property and casualty insurance, exclusively through independent agents. CCC is a leading Software as a Service provider to the automotive, insurance, and collision repair industries.

“We’re excited to extend our partnership with CCC as we move forward together toward a more innovative future,” said Paul Stachura, Senior Vice President/Chief Claims and Risk Engineering (CARE) Officer, State Auto. “Telematics is a strategic imperative for us. CCC’s data exchange stands out as a way for us to quickly and easily access the data, providers, and applications needed to deliver exceptional experiences for customers, while creating efficiencies and bottom-line impact for our business.”

CCC X aggregates and normalizes connected data from a rich variety of sources including beacons, dongles, mobile applications, fleet and professional devices, and connected cars. Powered by the CCC ONE™ Platform, CCC X passes connected car data to customers on the CCC network through software-driven workflows that serve the automotive ecosystem. Data accessed via CCC X can be deeply integrated into existing insurer business operations for UBI programs, increased claims automation, and more.

For State Auto, CCC X:

  • Receives data streamed from multiple sources, including a major OEM and a third-party device provider. Within the OEM program CCC has made available to the market, State Auto will use actual driving behavior to identify consumers to engage with by advertising discounted insurance policies.
  • Ingests telematics data from enrolled vehicles and provides additional analytics to help identify when an enrolled State Auto-insured vehicle is involved in an accident. Information regarding the potential accident is shared automatically with a State Auto first notice of loss representative, initiating the first steps in a comprehensive claims experience. State Auto can use this data to inform its decision-making in real-time, including vehicle routing and preferred method of inspection (based on carrier guidelines).

“CCC is proud to serve as the engine for State Auto’s telematics and connected data efforts,” said Naved Siddique, Group VP, Insurance Services Group for CCC. “We share their commitment to technology innovation and its power and impact on transforming the way insurance is delivered and serviced. We’ve worked with State Auto successfully for many years and are excited to help bring the full power of telematics to life.”

CCC’s hyperscale platform has processed data for billions of trips. The company has also processed nearly 200 million claims, including vehicle total loss valuations and vehicle repair estimates, making CCC X uniquely capable of enriching connected data in ways that support new business opportunities for customers and new experiences for consumers. CCC solutions are in use by more than 350 insurers, numerous OEMs, 24,000 collision repairers, and a range of third-party data and service providers.

Learn more about the CCC X™ data exchange.

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Alternative Energies

OXIS Energy Key Component of Safe Road Electrification Project to Launch in January

Vlad Poptamas

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The Lithium Sulphur for Safe Road Electrification (LISA) 43 month project starts on the 1st January 2019. It is worth over €7.9m and consists of 13 European partners including OXIS Energy UK Ltd. The overall goal is to design and manufacture a lithium sulfur technology that will enable safe electrification of EV applications.

Electric vehicles (EVs) are a key technology for reducing the environmental impact of road transport and reaching the EU sustainability goals in terms of reducing CO₂ emissions and oil dependency. With stricter environmental regulations, automobile manufacturers are now urged to produce electric or hybrid vehicles, including a commitment to reduce emissions by 40% by 2030. One of the main challenges is to increase market acceptance and deployment of EVs on European and global roads. This requires new battery technologies to overcome the limitations of current EVs, particularly in terms of driving range, charging time, costs and safety.

Due to the fact that Li-ion batteries are still the limiting factor for mass scale adoption of electrified vehicles, there is a need for new batteries that enable EVs with higher driving range, higher safety and faster charging at lower cost. Li-S is a promising alternative to Li-ion – free of critical raw material (CRM) and non-limited in capacity and energy by material of intercalation.

LISA advances the development of high energy and safe Li-S battery cells with hybrid solid state non-flammable electrolytes validated at 20Ah cell level. LISA will solve specific Li-S bottlenecks on metallic lithium protection, power rate and volumetric energy density; together with cost which is the main selection criteria for EV batteries. The sustainability of the technology will be assessed from an environmental and economic perspective.

The technology will be delivered ready for use within the corresponding state of charge estimator facilitating battery pack integration. Today, Li-S is twice as light as Li-ion and has reached only 10% of the sulphur theoretical energy density (2600Wh/kg) at cell prototype level (250-300Wh/kg), with potentially 800Wh/l (600Wh/kg) achievable by improving materials, components and manufacturing. LISA is strongly oriented to the development of lithium metal protection and solid state electrolyte and will incorporate process concepts enabling integration in future manufacturing lines. Moreover, the outcome of the project in terms of new materials, components, cells, and processes will be transferable to other lithium-anode based technologies such as Li-ion and solid state lithium technologies. As such, LISA will have a large impact on existing and next-generation EV batteries, delivering technology with higher energy density beyond the theoretical capacities of chemistries using CRM – i.e. natural graphite and cobalt – or silicon-based chemistries inherently limited by their manufacturability.

Steve Rowlands, Deputy CTO at OXIS says, “The LISA project ties in perfectly with OXIS Energy’s future business strategy in entering into the electric automotive sector including trucks and buses. Continuing our collaborations with LEITAT, Arkema, Cranfield University, IWS Fraunhofer and Renault as well as working with new partners is an exciting prospect in taking OXIS technology to the next level in terms of safe automotive electrification.”

The partners involved in the LISA project are LEITAT (co-ordinators), OXIS Energy Ltd, Cranfield University, Varta Micro Battery GmbH, CIC Energigune, ARKEMA, Fraunhofer Gesellschaft Zur Förderung De Angewandten Forschung, Pulsedeon Oy, ACCUREC Recycling GmbH, Optimat Ltd, Technische Universität Dresden, VDL Enabling Transport Solutions BV and Renault.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 814471.

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