THOUGHT LEADERSHIP

ARTICLE

Autonomous Freight Truck Hauls into the Future 

BY KEN KAPLAN & MATT ALDERTON

Tomas Ohlson, senior developer at Einride, describes how the Swedish startup uses cloud computing to modernize the freight industry.

Freight transportation is headed for disruption driven by data technologies, including cloud computing. Swedish startup Einride created a high-tech alternative to traditional trucking that aims to improve road safety and lessen environmental impact.

Road freight transport is responsible for up to 7% of global carbon dioxide emissions and that’s growing, according to Tomas Ohlson, senior developer at Einride.

“Carbon dioxide emissions are threatening the future of mankind,” he said. “Today, there’s a lack of cost-competitive sustainable alternatives to trucking.”

Ken Kaplan is editor in chief of The Forecast. Matt Alderton contributed to this story.

That is until computing and communications technologies become powerful enough to successfully drive road vehicles. Einride founders pulled together ideas and talent from the auto and computing industries to bring a real alternative to the diesel-powered 18 wheeler. 

“We’re rethinking road freight from scratch,” said Ohlson. 

Einride unveiled two autonomous electric trucks: the T-pod – a 23-foot-long cab-less vehicle that can carry 15 standard pallets and travel 124 miles on a single electric charge – and the T-log, a version of the T-pod made explicitly for logging. The former is in the middle of its first commercial rollouts at German logistics company DB Schenker and German grocery chain Lidl. And Einride continues to test vehicles on public roads in Sweden.

The most revolutionary part of all is Einride’s AET system that connects to the cloud. The company’s full-stack, transportation-as-a-service solution controls everything from order management, fleet management, and self-driving systems to the actual hardware.

“Integrate order and fleet management into one digital platform, design it for autonomous and electric trucks, and what you end up with is an extremely competitive solution,” Ohlson said.

Read the full story at The Forecast.

"We’re rethinking road freight from scratch."

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