Descartes Systems Group, a global leader in uniting logistics-intensive businesses in commerce, announced that Etihad Cargo, the cargo and logistics division of Etihad Airways, has further automated air cargo processes using Descartes’ next generation Internet of Things (IoT) Bluetooth Low Energy solution integrated with Jettainer’s unit load device (ULD) management services. The combined solutions expand Etihad Cargo’s ability to improve ground processes at cargo and ULD handling and to gain data-driven insights into the transport and ambient conditions of air cargo in transit.
“At Etihad Cargo, we’re continuing to invest in technology and innovation to make air cargo handling more efficient, smarter and faster, and this includes the usage and management of our ULD fleet” said Thomas Schürmann, head of cargo operations and delivery at Etihad Cargo. “The addition of Descartes’ next generation IoT devices to our ULD fleet provides true operational value for us. Etihad Cargo expects to reduce the number of lost ULDs – those that lose their trail somewhere at the airport, at the ground handling agent or the forwarder – by being able to tell exactly where they were last seen. We furthermore expect to simplify ground processes, for example, by reducing the time and effort spent on stock take.”
“As part of our premium product, ULD Select, the combination of our sophisticated ULD management solution with Descartes’ next generation IoT devices can be a powerful boost to our service. The technology can provide our valued customers like Etihad Cargo insights into the conditions of their freight, give access to detailed location information, facilitate ULD processing on the ground, and thus further improve asset utilization,” said Ram Krishnaswamy, general manager Middle East, Africa and Indian Subcontinent at Jettainer. “Jettainer embraces innovation and digitalization, and this is exactly what we experience with Descartes as the leading technical provider in the field of Bluetooth Low Energy tracking solutions. Potential benefits are not limited to ULD processing, we also see value in streamlining export, transit and import cargo processes and will explore this further with our customers and partners.”
Descartes’ next generation IoT Bluetooth Low Energy ULD tracking uses Bluetooth tags affixed to containers or pallets, mobile applications and mesh networks to automate end-to-end tracking of assets. Bluetooth tags affixed to ULDs prior to loading enable easy access to real-time location information, shipment-level condition data, such as temperature, light, humidity and movement, and chain of custody detail that indicates whose custody assets are in at any given time. Tags can also be added to any ground service equipment, like dollies, for full control over a carrier’s equipment.
“We’re pleased to help Etihad Cargo optimize the use of its ULD fleet with richer visibility at both the asset and shipment level,” said Scott Sangster, general manager, logistics service providers at Descartes. “ULDs are the backbone of the air cargo supply chain and, with coverage in over 1,300 reader locations and 200 airports worldwide, Descartes’ innovations in IoT-based tracking and advanced network capabilities are helping airlines access the status of their ULDs anytime, anywhere—through any internet-enabled device.”