Application of the Internet of Things in Freight Transport

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8th Feb 2020 Transportation Reference this

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Discuss three applications of Internet of Things (IOT) in freight transport. What are the main security issues that can act as a barrier for the implementation of IOT in freight transport?

Introduction

This paper explores three applications of the Internet of Things (IoT) in freight transport through literature review. In the first part of this paper I dedicated a section to the introduction of the concept of IoT. There are several other applications of IoT; however, for the benefit of this paper I will be focussing on following applications: monitoring the quality of goods being transported this will include dangerous goods, tracking fleet in real time, supply chain aspect in freight transport. In the last part of the essay I will focus on discussing barriers which may impede the introduction of IoT in the discussed applications.

Internet of Things (IoT)

There are several definitions of the term Internet of Things (IoT); however, for the benefit of this paper, I will adopt the view that IoT refers to ‘devices or sensors connected to the world, where objects are connected, monitored, and optimised through either wired, wireless or hybrid systems. (Zhou, Chong and Ngai, 2015)

Internet of things can only function if certain conditions are fulfilled. First, the objects must be intelligent themselves and have installed a sensor; secondly these sensors have to connect to some sort of network. (Ben-Daya, Hassini and Bahroun, 2017)

Internet of Things and its further development on a large scale such as we can see today would not have be possible without invention of sensors capable of storing data and connecting to network. Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is seen as a foundation to the IoT technology. (Xu, He and Li, 2014). RFID is a tracking system which automatically identifies a unique electronic barcode attached to each object. Those barcodes are also able to store and transmit simple information. (Kubáč, 2016)

Transport of dangerous and fragile goods

In this paragraph I will discuss the application of IoT in transport of dangerous and fragile goods. The paragraph will be divided into two parts, in the first part I will focus on transport of dangerous goods, in the second part I will concentrate on quality management using IoT in transportation of fragile goods.

As the countries become more industrialised so does the increase for transport of dangerous goods, therefor dangerous goods transport is one of the growing areas of logistics. Several conditions need to be met to transport these goods. The surface of the road on the chosen route and neighbourhood area must be carefully evaluated to reduce risk. The vehicle of choice must also be carefully checked ensuring that there are no contradicting loads, vehicle is suitable and operating stall is qualified. With the use of RFID it can be assured that all above conditions are met. To do this all the equipment and goods receive electronic tags, this is also issued in a form of a card to each member of staff. Prior to departure DFID will read the information from each one of those devices plus the workers card ensuring that all of the criteria have been met. Figure 1 captures the flow chart with the use of RFID. (Liu, Li and Ji, 2012)

Figure 1.  Flow chart of dangerous goods transport plan using RFID (Liu, Li and Ji, 2012)

Use of IoT in transport also enables for close monitoring of fragile goods such as perishables. This is knows as Quality Control Logistics (QCL) and can be done with a use of different sensors installed in the vehicles. (Ben-Daya, Hassini and Bahroun, 2017). Installing several sensors allows companies to ‘control packages within the same container or a controlled environment’ this not only ensure that the goods arrive at the location in perfect condition but also allows us to estimate the remaining life time of the products. (Bogataj, Bogataj and Hudoklin, 2017)

Close monitoring allows companies to be more reactive, reducing the food waste and for contingency planning if the companies can be altered that their goods may not arrive in perfect condition. Nowadays most businesses operate as close to Just in Time (JIT) mode of delivery as possible, a delay can be damaging to the company’s reputation, if QCL also allows to feed the information back to the business awaiting delivery those customers an be more reactive ensuring contingency plan in place in case goods arriving at the warehouse are not usable.

Tracking fleet in real time using IoT

In this paragraph I will focus on the role of IoT in tracking fleet in real time. I will explore how this application can be used to enable business cooperation and also to aid the efforts in disaster relief.

‘In modern business management, individual businesses cannot compete as independent entities but rather as active members of the wider supply chain involving a network of multiple business relationship (Lambert and Cooper, 2000). IoT can allow companies to exchange data and identify common routes used to collect and deliver goods.  With the use of IoT driver’s behaviour can also be monitored and assessed. This not only helps to introduce cost savings into logistic companies but may also prevent accidents on the road. With the use of remote sensing method drivers’ behaviours can be monitored and any inconsistencies can be addressed with additional training. (Jachimczyk et al., 2018)

One of the most important responsibilities for logistical companies is deliver of the goods.  This need becomes even more urgent when there is a disaster and IoT can play an important role in construction of emergency logistic systems. (Lianming,2016)

If emergency and disaster services can plug into and take advantage of a wide range of vehicles connected to the network in real time, they will be able to use those to aid their efforts. (Xu, Yang and Yang, 2013)

IoT in Freight Transport – customer experience

In this paragraph I will be focusing on how IoT in freight transport creates a better customer experience.

New developments in the field of IoT allow for an improvement in the last mile logistics. This is the least efficient stage of the supply chain therefore a lot of effort should be concentrated on improving those efficiencies. Introduction of proximity points seems especially promising. Those points can be utilised as storage if the customers are not available to collect their orders this could improve efficiencies of the last mile deliveries (Ranieri et al., 2018)

RFID system is composed of a reader and a tag. Due to broad application of RFID in the future, customer will be able to identify, track and trace their deliveries in real time. Currently most of the time goods are scanned only in the hub this causes the unavailability of information to the customer, it also may translate into many items being lost. With the growing application of RFID systems customers will be able to receive a clear visibility into real time shipping, while the businesses will be able to track their deliveries ensuring that the goods are not being misplaced by logistical companies. (Xu, He and Li, 2014)

Security issues acting as a barrier for the implementation of IOT in freight transport.

In IOT all the devices will be connected to the internet with a unique ID with which each device will be identified. Heterogeneity of devices will become a growing concern, as will the privacy concern. In the future most of the devices will be capable of constantly connecting data and placing that data in the cloud. This data could potentially be hacked. The security will become a growing concern for the IOT.

Large number of devices will also mean large amount of data, all this data will need to be stored somewhere safe.

Conclusion

In this paper I highlighted three applications of the internet of things and described barriers for the implementation of the Internet of things in the field of freight logistics.

I explored several subcategories within the three main applications. I concluded the paper by highlighting the barriers for the implementation of the IoT

Bibliography

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BEN-DAYA, M., HASSINI, E. AND BAHROUN, Z.

Internet of things and supply chain management: a literature review

In-text: (Ben-Daya, Hassini and Bahroun, 2017)

Your Bibliography: Ben-Daya, M., Hassini, E. and Bahroun, Z. (2017). Internet of things and supply chain management: a literature review. International Journal of Production Research, pp.1-24.

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BOGATAJ, D., BOGATAJ, M. AND HUDOKLIN, D.

Mitigating risks of perishable products in the cyber-physical systems based on the extended MRP model

In-text: (Bogataj, Bogataj and Hudoklin, 2017)

Your Bibliography: Bogataj, D., Bogataj, M. and Hudoklin, D. (2017). Mitigating risks of perishable products in the cyber-physical systems based on the extended MRP model. International Journal of Production Economics, 193, pp.51-62.

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JACHIMCZYK, B., DZIAK, D., CZAPLA, J., DAMPS, P. AND KULESZA, W.

IoT On-Board System for Driving Style Assessment

In-text: (Jachimczyk et al., 2018)

Your Bibliography: Jachimczyk, B., Dziak, D., Czapla, J., Damps, P. and Kulesza, W. (2018). IoT On-Board System for Driving Style Assessment. Sensors, 18(4), p.1233.

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KUBÁČ, L.

The application of internet of things in logistics

In-text: (Kubáč, 2016)

Your Bibliography: Kubáč, L. (2016). The application of internet of things in logistics. Transport & Logistics: The International Journal, 16(39), p.11.

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LAMBERT, D. M. AND COOPER, M. C.

Issues in Supply Chain Management

In-text: (Lambert and Cooper, 2000)

Your Bibliography: Lambert, D. and Cooper, M. (2000). Issues in Supply Chain Management. Industrial Marketing Management, 29(1), pp.65-83.

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LIU, C., LI, Y. D. AND JI, S. W.

Application of the Internet of Things Technology in Explosive Dangerous Goods Transport

In-text: (Liu, Li and Ji, 2012)

Your Bibliography: Liu, C., Li, Y. and Ji, S. (2012). Application of the Internet of Things Technology in Explosive Dangerous Goods Transport. Applied Mechanics and Materials, 178-181, pp.1725-1728.

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RANIERI, L., DIGIESI, S., SILVESTRI, B. AND ROCCOTELLI, M.

A Review of Last Mile Logistics Innovations in an Externalities Cost Reduction Vision

In-text: (Ranieri et al., 2018)

Your Bibliography: Ranieri, L., Digiesi, S., Silvestri, B. and Roccotelli, M. (2018). A Review of Last Mile Logistics Innovations in an Externalities Cost Reduction Vision. Sustainability, 10(3), p.782.

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XU, L. D., HE, W. AND LI, S.

Internet of Things in Industries: A Survey

In-text: (Xu, He and Li, 2014)

Your Bibliography: Xu, L., He, W. and Li, S. (2014). Internet of Things in Industries: A Survey. IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, 10(4), pp.2233-2243.

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XU, R., YANG, L. AND YANG, S.

Architecture Design of Internet of Things in Logistics Management for Emergency Response

In-text: (Xu, Yang and Yang, 2013)

Your Bibliography: Xu, R., Yang, L. and Yang, S. (2013). Architecture Design of Internet of Things in Logistics Management for Emergency Response. 2013 IEEE International Conference on Green Computing and Communications and IEEE Internet of Things and IEEE Cyber, Physical and Social Computing.

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YAMADA, T. AND FEBRI, Z.

Freight transport network design using particle swarm optimisation in supply chain–transport supernetwork equilibrium

In-text: (Yamada and Febri, 2015)

Your Bibliography: Yamada, T. and Febri, Z. (2015). Freight transport network design using particle swarm optimisation in supply chain–transport supernetwork equilibrium. Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, 75, pp.164-187.

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ZHOU, L., CHONG, A. Y. AND NGAI, E. W.

Supply chain management in the era of the internet of things

In-text: (Zhou, Chong and Ngai, 2015)

Your Bibliography: Zhou, L., Chong, A. and Ngai, E. (2015). Supply chain management in the era of the internet of things. International Journal of Production Economics, 159, pp.1-3.

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Lianming, Z. 2016, “Construction of Emergency Logistics System Based on Internet of Things”, Revista Ibérica de Sistemas e Tecnologias de Informação, , no. 18, pp. 1-10.

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