Container handling in intermodal nodes - optimal and secure

The main objective of CHINOS was to optimise container handling in intermodal modes by using innovative IT technology. The most challenging applications were the identification of cargo and equipment, and the detection of their status from both the economic and the security aspect. It is important to exploit the potentials of the RFID technology to the best possible extent for intermodal container logistics and security.

Special emphasis was laid on process integration and how the new technologies could be best embedded into existing (or re-engineered) business processes and IT systems along the chain in order to enhance the efficiency, information and service quality, security, speed of operation, and use of storage space on vehicles and in yards. CHINOS concentrated on containers; however, the results could be transferred to other cargo units like swap bodies or semi-trailers. CHINOS researched a methodology for the integration of container identification information using RFID technology, container security-related information (electronic seals), and optical container condition information (high-resolution images) in intermodal transport nodes thus supporting the business processes within the nodes and the total transport chains.

An integrated prototype system for automatic container identification based on RFID-technology and optical damage documentation was developed. It was installed at European intermodal container handling nodes and operated under real-life conditions in order to validate the functionality, scalability and portability to other end-user scenarios. Furthermore, supporting the chain perspective, hinterland transport was included in the project by involving inland terminal operators, freight village operators and railway operators.

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