"Hands-on" prototypes at extended DHL Innovation Center
- Innovation Center integrated into DHL Solutions & Innovations
- Interactive "Hands-on Lab" now offering a sneak preview of the logistics of tomorrow
- Showroom for new sector-specific logistics solutions
The DHL Innovation Center, located between the cities of Cologne and Bonn, is seeing an expansion.
The DHL Innovation Center, which is visited by some 10,000 people each year, was integrated into the newly established DHL Solutions & Innovations unit, which bundles all innovation-related activities within DHL.
Located between the cities of Cologne and Bonn, the DHL Innovation Center has been extended by a so-called "Hands-on Lab". In the new room the Group is now presenting developments for which test runs are about to begin. In addition, pre-series products are on display here which were designed in the Innovation Center's own laboratory.
"Innovations stand for progress and the future - and the DHL Innovation Center is the place where the future of logistics takes shape. For three years now we have been cooperating with partners from both the industry and the scientific sector to develop solutions that ensure the long-term success of our customers," says Frank Appel, CEO of Deutsche Post DHL.
One example for the prototypes displayed in the Hands-on Lab is "digitalStrom", an innovative solution and intelligent control system for electricity consumption. The "Cargoguard Safebox", which secures shipments by means of an electronic seal, is another development shown here. Customers can gain first-hand experience of all these prototypes. Based on their feedback, finishing touches can be applied to the prototypes prior to field testing. Logistics innovations and sector-specific solutions that have been tried and tested in the Hands-on Lab and are already being used in practice are presented in the showroom.
In time for the Innovation Center’s third anniversary this area got updated as well. An application that enables real-time transmission of information on the transport status of shipments is the most recent addition to the exhibition. This solution offers customers 24/7 access to information on the position and condition of their shipments and contributes to enhancing the security of freight transportation.
Designed for day-to-day operation
"It is essential for the success of our development work that we provide solutions which reflect the needs of our customers. We therefore have integrated the DHL Innovation Center into the DHL Solutions & Innovations unit, thus ensuring that requests from each DHL business unit and various industry sectors will be incorporated into the development processes at a very early stage," explains Petra Kiwitt, Head of DHL Solutions & Innovations.
Many products have meanwhile proven themselves in day-to-day operations. The DHL SmartTruck, for example, is an intelligent delivery vehicle currently in use for DHL Express in Berlin. It coordinates deliveries, integrates pick-ups, takes account of traffic jams and automatically charts the best route. The Smart Sensor Temperature, likewise developed at the Innovation Center, also offers considerable potential for the future. This electronic device monitors the temperature and other external influences of a shipment throughout the trip and is especially suited to businesses in the pharmaceutical, life sciences and food industries.