with limited worker intervention. This helps FedEx reduce labor challenges, streamline sorting processes, and increase theefficiency of carrier operations across its networks.
Machine Vision Offers HeightenedSupply Chain VisibilityWhile increasing supply chain visibility is an on-go- ing process, another tool—machine vision—can help companies reach a deeper level of visibility.Cogniac, a San Jose, Calif.-based start-up, uses several visualsources to track machinery, equipment, etc. However, it’s thefunneling of the data produced by vision cameras, securitycameras, drones and smartphones, onto an artificial intelligence platform that allows companies to actually “see” theissues that they are concerned about.
Using AI, human-computer interaction tools, and large-scale data management, Cogniac provides an enterprise platform that facilitates automating any visual task. For example,if a company is seeking to ensure quality by tracking potentialdamage of a product through the supply chain, Cogniac canuse the visual data to identify the problems through a feedback system that works through third-party apps to providealerts and notifications to customers.
In addition to the basic steps of visualization, Cogniac
can provide a customized AI model based on feedback. And
these systems are “intelligent” in that they can learn what
Cogniac calls characterization based on the input from users
as well as archives images.
Cogniac supports multiple
deployment options: cloud,
gateway, on-premises and a
One early user is a manu-
facturing company that used
the technology in its kitting
and warehouse manage-
ment to ensure an optimized
supply chain. In a compli-
cated warehouse with over
100,000 parts, workers were
manually picking the orders,
at an unacceptably high error rate. One of the problems was
that many of the parts looked similar to each other. Using
cameras Cogniac software was able to recognize each indi-
vidual part, which increased the accuracy of the kits.
Heavy-Duty Electric TruckCharging Site Opens in OregonIn April 2021, Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) and Portland General Electric (PGE) announced the opening of Electric Island, a heavy-duty electric truckcharging site. Electric Island aims to accelerate the development, testing and deployment of zero-emissions (tank towheel) commercial vehicles.
Electric Island opened with eight vehicle charging stations (a majority of which are available for public use) forthe charging of electric cars, buses, box vans and semi-trucks.The site was built to provide charging for electric vehiclesof all shapes and sizes and serves as an innovation center,allowing both PGE and DTNA to study energy management,charger use and performance, and, in the case of DTNA, itsown vehicles’ charging performance.
Electric Island is located across the street from DTNAheadquarters and was specifically designed for medium- andheavy-duty trucks aligned to the blueprint of the West CoastClean Transit Corridor Initiative (WCCTCI). WCCTCI’s collaboration between nine electric utilities and two governmentagencies yielded a strategic plan in 2020 to electrify 1,300miles of I- 5 across the three West Coast states to provide publicly available charging for freight and delivery trucks.
The site is designed to keep Electric Island future-proof, allowing the chargers of today to be replaced with new chargertechnologies of the future, including the planned 1+ megawattchargers, when they are released. Additional plans for on-siteenergy storage, solar power generation, and a product andtechnology showcase building remain under development.
PORTLAND GENERAL ELEC TRIC CO .
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