GERMAN freight forwarder Hellmann Worldwide is phasing in ocean containers with real-time satellite tracking and intrusion detection technology.
The control devices and monitoring services will be supplied by space technology company Astrium, a sister company of aircraft manufacturer Airbus.
The contract for the Astrium’s ‘SeCure’ container monitoring system was signed at the launch of the project in Bremen today.
“We will initially retrofit 20 ocean containers and then phase in more over time,” said Hellmann general manager Karl Engelhard.
The forwarder was involved from the beginning in the development of SeCure, together with terminal operator Eurogate. It has carried out a series of trial shipments on trans-Atlantic services and is keen to pioneer the commercial use of intelligent containers.
The system is designed to increase shipment visibility and thus eliminate wastage and delays along the supply chain, particularly for high-value cargo, Engelhard explained.
Hellmann also hopes to get the smart boxes exempted from future container scanning provisions to create a fast-track green lane for its cargo. “We hope the US will approve the system,” Engelhard said.