14. December 2022

Innovative EU project for self-reliant truck traffic

Hamburg becomes the first test city for self-reliant truck traffic in Europe. As part of the MODI project, a total of 29 partners are testing the implementation of solutions for road traffic at the highest level of automation, in this case without a driver being in the vehicle whilst driving. The Universal Transport Group is also indirectly involved in these tests, because our parent company Gruber Logistics is involved in this research project as one of the partners from the private sector.

With a subsidy of 23 million euros, the MODI project is funded by the EU at around 80 percent. The funds are provided from the Horizon Europe project. The aim is to develop sustainable concepts in the transport sector due to serious shortage of drivers and increasing transport needs.

The first test run of a self-reliant truck is taking place in Hamburg.

The research program and testing will last four years. At this point, the technical infrastructure for the communication between the trucks as well as the road infrastructure will be ready.

Further tests will be carried out on the motorway corridor from Rotterdam in the Netherlands to Moss in Norway, crossing four national borders and supporting terminal operations in four different northern european ports.

Automated traffic should make a significant contribution to improving European logistics and transport chains in the future. The aim is not to fully automate traffic, but to simplify the driver’s work and focus on those jobs where the added value of the transport service provided is greatest.

special trailer using a heavy-duty crane and transported to its place of use in the Egyptian capital of Cairo. Around 220 kilometers had to be covered safely to reach the finish line.

While the width and depth of the plant tower, around 3.50 meters each, did not pose a challenge for the large-capacity and heavy-duty specialists from Universal Transport, the cold box had to be transported lying flat due to its height of around 40 meters. The task was to maneuver a push and pull truck, over 60 meters long and almost 230 tons total weight, over busy roads, around curves and through narrow places.

Project manager Martin Ludvík helped prepare the project from Paderborn and traveled to the land of the pharaohs to accompany the transport. He says: “Precision work was key, particularly in the port area and for delivery to the factory premises. We only moved at walking pace, with the low-loader being accompanied and secured by several people on the right and left by foot.”

Thanks to the well-rehearsed and experienced team, the transport and its valuable freight arrived safely in Cairo after a day and a half. Cold boxes are used in a variety of applications for the treatment of cryogenic liquids and gases, for example in air separation plants, gas separation and liquefaction plants, chemical and petrochemical plants.

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