It was founded 2008 as an extension of the company’s research and development department in an effort to learn even more about its customers’ challenges and how profitability can be improved. Already in its first five years the lab reduced fuel consumption by 20 percent and carbon emissions by 50 percent per transported tonne.
“This is about practising what we preach. We are not asking our customers and the industry in general to do something we are not willing to do ourselves,” says Jan Björklund, Head of Scania Transport Laboratory.
Every day, the Scania Transport Laboratory operates 14 truck and trailer combinations between the manufacturing plants in Södertälje, Sweden, and Zwolle in the Netherlands. Over the course of a year, each truck is driven for approximately 400,000 kilometres, which is about three times as much as a truck would run in the same time in an average haulier operation. That means the Lab offers a uniquely quick opportunity for Scania to test and assess vehicle quality and performance. Equally important is to test theories about flow analysis and planning as means to remove waste from the transport system, as well as driver training.
“One of the key learnings for us is the effect of planning and driver training. We see that it works and that fairly small adjustments have big impact. For example, reducing the speed from 90 to 80 km/h in the long haul operations reduces fuel by 10 percent whilst the comparative time loss is only 1 percent,” says Björklund.
- We are not at 100% fossil free fuel in the operation as there is a lack of HVO/biodiesel fuel stations outside Sweden which means that some trucks sometimes have to refuel with some regular diesel.
Volvo Trucks provides autonomous transport solution to Brønnøy Kalk AS
The agreement follows recent successful automation projects involving mining, sugar cane harvesting and refuse collection. Yet this commercial solution represents an exciting first for Volvo Trucks. Rather than purchasing autonomous trucks, Brønnøy Kalk is buying a transport solution – specifically the transport of the limestone between the two hubs.
“This is an important step for us,” says Raymond Langfjord, Managing Director of the mine. “The competition in the industry is tough. We are continuously looking to increase our efficiency and productivity long-term, and we have a clear vision of taking advantage of new opportunities in technology and digital solutions. We were searching for a reliable and innovative partner that shares our focus on sustainability and safety. Going autonomous will greatly increase our competitiveness in a tough global market.”
“We are proud to be able to present an autonomous solution which will meet the challenges of our customers both in terms of safety, reliability and profitability,” says Claes Nilsson, President of Volvo Trucks. The global transport needs are continuously changing at a very high pace and the industry is demanding new and advanced solutions to stay ahead. Our aim is to be the leader of the development of products and services to respond to these demands”, continues Claes Nilsson.
“It is exciting to reach this point where we introduce autonomous solutions, says Sasko Cuklev, Director Autonomous Solutions at Volvo Trucks. By working in a confined area on a predetermined route, we can find out how to get the best out of the solution and tailor it according to specific customer needs. This is all about collaborating to develop new solutions, providing greater flexibility and efficiency as well as increased productivity.”
The agreement involves a deal whereby the customer buys a total transport service and pays per tonne delivered.