• The implementation of Artificial Intelligence models and algorithms will enable efficient and sustainable optimisation of the port-logistics sector.
  • Blockchain technology and interoperability between corporate networks improves hinterland port data management.
  • Collaborative logistics enables further optimisation in the hinterland and urban distribution of goods.
  • The application of AI optimises and improves waterfront port operations.

Port logistics is an essential part of supply chains. Today, the need for an efficient integration of processes connecting agents and maritime and land transport is becoming apparent, with the aim of providing more reliable, connected and resilient services.

Taking into account this context, and with the aim of presenting practical examples taking into account the latest innovations available based on the use of 4.0 technologies, which currently allow progress towards the integration and efficiency of logistics-port chains, Logistop, a leading association in logistics innovation, has organised the Logistic Observatory “Application of 4. 0 technologies for the digital integration of logistics-port chains”, in which we had the introduction of  Tomás de la Vega, Managing Director, Logistop, the moderation of Alicia Enríquez Manilla, R+D+i Technician – Researcher of the Fundación Valenciaport, and with the participation of Jorge Feliu Escagüés, R+D+i Technician, Fundación Valenciaport, Borja Sanz Gresa, R+D+i Technician – digital transformation, Fundación Valenciaport, David Ciprés, Head of Research Line, ITAINNOVA, and Coqui García, PhD, Chief Technology Innovation Officer, HIADES Business Patterns, SL, and associate professor in the dept. of Mathematics, Statistics and Research, Fundación Valenciaport. of Mathematics, Statistics and Operations Research at the University of La Laguna.

Optimising the port hinterland using AI models and algorithms

As a critical part of the transport and logistics sector, Jorge Feliu highlighted how ports are fundamental nodes in ensuring the proper functioning of the supply chain.

In recent years, the logistics-port sector has been immersed in a process of transition towards new models based on 4.0 technologies that are allowing the digitalisation of processes and operations, through, for example, the adoption of artificial intelligence models and algorithms.

As Feliu pointed out, in recent years, artificial intelligence is transforming the work methodology within the industry, from optimisation of maritime routes, through cargo management, to predictions made on the arrival of ships or the choice of the mode of transport of cargoes.

To exemplify this application of AI, Feliu analysed the European Planet project, which aims to promote the European Union’s leadership in global logistics flows by efficiently interconnecting infrastructures using different concepts of the well-known Physical Internet, in collaboration and combination with other technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, IoT or Blockchain.

In conclusion, the following can be identified as benefits extracted from port hinterlands after the application of AI:

  • Identifying optimal routes in real time and supporting decision-making in daily procedures.
  • Identifying the different transport alternatives, improving the level of service by identifying the optimal alternative
  • Minimise the impact of emissions and associated costs.
  • Helping to decongest the hinterland area.

“Ports are fundamental nodes in ensuring the proper functioning of the supply chain”
Jorge Feliu Escagüés, R&D&I Technician, Fundación Valenciaport

Blockchain technology and interoperability between corporate networks for port-hinterland data management

For his part, Borja Sanz focused on the applicability of Blockchain technology in the port logistics sector, also taking as a reference the experience gained from the Planet project.

How does it add value to the port sector? As detailed by Sanz, the use of Blockchain technologies allows greater visibility of the supply chain, knowing in real time each transaction and in what time it is, among other factors that will provide greater security and simplification of operations. In addition, in the port environment, it allows for increased efficiency, cost reduction, improved collaboration and trust between stakeholders. It also favours the transformation of traditional processes, enabling digital transformation and fostering innovation.

Finally, Sanz highlights that, the application of Blockchain technologies will enable the reduction of 30% of paper-based procedures by tracking data changes (history) and 10% of litigation through increased trust and transparency.

“The application of Blockchain technologies will enable a 30% reduction in paper-based procedures by tracking data changes (history) and a 10% reduction in litigation through increased trust and transparency”
Borja Sanz Gresa, R&D&I Technician – digital transformation, Fundación Valenciaport

PI node and collaborative urban logistics

David Ciprés focused on the analysis of collaborative logistics and how it impacts the hinterland and urban distribution of goods by evaluating the collaborative last mile delivery model to assess how the impact of physical Internet concepts in combination with algorithms for last mile collaboration and the use of green vehicles can improve processes, operations and efficiency of urban logistics.

Ciprés also explained how, through a digital twin model, new collaborative business models that are not yet implemented can be tested through the applicability of different technological innovations by taking them to the field on virtual models that allow us to analyse the different configurations of the scenarios proposed. In addition, the use of IoT will make it possible to improve traceability and test the impact of the transport network, analysing all the improvements it generates.

Finally, he detailed how the use of a virtual model of a collaborative warehouse (PI Node), allows us to collaboratively evaluate how operations and processes within a warehouse are affected when PI concepts are applied in combination with new technologies such as AI.

“The virtual model allows to explore the results in different scenario configurations through the applicability of different technological innovations”
David Ciprés, Head of Research Line, ITAINNOVA

Optimising port operations on the water’s edge using digitised data

Coqui García has analysed the challenge facing the port community in the transition from a traditional model, in which the agents communicate on paper one by one, to a new paradigm of data sharing in which data sharing plays a crucial role. In this new paradigm, García points out, the different agents can access reliable, digitised data that will allow them to make decisions in a collaborative way.

Likewise, among the current problems that the ports have to face, García highlighted poor coordination between partners, low transparency and visibility, as well as inefficiencies within the supply chain.

Moreover, the ports, in their strategic plans, have identified three critical areas: sustainability, security and efficiency.

To conclude his speech, García explained the different management solutions for the digitalisation of different port agents (pilots, tugboats, moorers and control tower), through the ecosystem of products developed by HIADES under the AMURA brand, which allow to identify, in real time, what is happening at any given moment.

“Real-time information and predictions allow ports to actively improve the entire logistics chain”
Coqui García, PhD, Chief Technology Innovation Officer, HIADES Business Patterns, SL, and Associate Professor in the Dept. of Mathematics, Statistics and Operations Research at the University of La Laguna

About Logistop

At Logistop we transform the supply chain through innovation, helping industry and companies to become more efficient and sustainable.

We are a multidisciplinary and inter-territorial working space in the logistics innovation arena formed by all the actors involved in the supply chain, as well as universities, technology centres, associations and specialised consultancy firms.

One of Logistop’s main objectives is: 1) To promote the need for innovation among companies involved in the logistics sector; 2) To promote innovation projects; 3) To communicate the real needs of the sector at an institutional level.