Interviews 2017

Unmanned Cargo Ground Vehicle Conference

Unmanned urban trains, a reality in 5 to 10 years – Interview with Burkhard Stadlmann, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria

Burkhard Stadlmann is Professor of Automation Engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria. He will speak at the Unmanned Cargo Ground Vehicle Conference, on June 14, 2017, in Venlo, The Netherlands. His speech gives an overview of the different applications of automatic train driving and their challenges for automatic driving on rails. The biggest challenge autonomous trains are open access tracks, which can be found in populated areas which need a high level of sense and avoid.

“Safety in different situations with the train is our major challenge. Even the weather can have a lot of impact on train operations. Think of high winds that can cause snapped trees over the tracks, ice and even wet tracks have a negative impact. Trains need long braking distances in an emergency, which is not always available,” explains Burkhard Stadlmann. “There are different applications regarding the various lines and the different transport modes (passenger, freight, long distance, regional, urban, etc.) that require special techniques. This is also challenging for the many different sensors aboard a train.”

Read the full interview on the Unmanned Cargo Ground Vehicle website.

Internet of Things Event

Slow and steady development is accelerating – Interview with Stijn Grove, Dutch Datacenter Association

Stijn Grove, CEO Dutch Datacenter Association is giving on June 8 his keynote speaker speech during the 7th edition of the Internet of Things Event at High Tech Campus Eindhoven, The Netherlands. Here he gives an impression what it will be about.

“The possibilities and chances of the Internet of Things are by far greater than most people can imagine,” according to Stijn Grove, managing director of the Dutch Datacenter Association (DDA). “In the past years more and more electronic equipment got connected, that is what started Internet of Things to grow. For instance, the once so much used mobile phone has become a smartphone with an app for calling someone. But the device itself offers far more possibilities with many different apps that can be used for a great number of different things. These developments are going faster and faster nowadays and offer a host of possibilities and challenges.”

It is expected that in 2020 more than twenty billion devices will be part of Internet of Things (IoT). Not only smartphones, tablets, laptops will be connected, but also tools like kitchen appliances, lightning, heating in your house and many professional instruments. This will deliver an enormous amount of data that is processed in data centers.

Read the full interview on the Internet of Things Event website.

Unmanned Cargo Ship Conference

Smaller unmanned ships attractive & environmentally friendly – Interview with Ørnulf Jan Rødseth, SINTEF Ocean

Ørnulf Jan Rødseth is Senior Scientist at SINTEF Ocean in Trondheim, Norway and studies the development of transport over water with small unmanned ships. In his view, smaller unmanned ships are more economical and also environmentally friendly. He will talk at the Unmanned Cargo Ship Conference on June 13, 2017, in Venlo, The Netherlands.

“Bigger ships are more economical, simply because of their more efficient use of fuel and smaller crews required. But this has a limit as they have a draught that limits their possibilities in shallow waters,” according to Ørnulf Jan Rødseth, senior scientist at SINTEF Ocean in Trondheim, Norway. “Trondheim is the centre of a national project on testing fully or partial unmanned ships. Fully automated and smaller ships allow far more flexible transport systems. On top of that the smaller ships can be cleaner for the environment, as they make use of batteries or fuel cells. However, the ships have to be integrated into the complete transport system and the ‘last mile’ from quay to user must be incorporated.”

The Norway has a very long coastline with fjords that can penetrate sometimes hundreds of miles inland. For instance if a large ship docks in at Trondheim container terminal, it unloads its cargo which is then transported by trucks to destinations which are up to 180 km further along the coast. That is why smaller ships can be used to keep the logistic chain going. “The idea is that larger ships will serve as feeders and we intend to use the smaller ships as shuttles between terminals and smaller quays. Another challenge is that we have many small communities living along our coast. Sometimes only twenty persons live on an island, but they need a ferry on a daily basis simply to be kept alive,” tells Rødseth. “So these connections are relative expensive as the ship makes mostly only one or two runs to the island, with a full crew. On top of that they run on fuel which is not very environmental friendly. This means that the cost of transporting for instance one box of goods is very uneconomical and not good for the environment at all. If the crew could be eliminated and the boat running electrically it would be far more economical. That is the goal we hope to reach in due course.”.

Read the full interview on the Unmanned Cargo Ship Conference website.

3D Food Printing Conference

Faster 3D food printing will reach the consumer – Interview with Nesli Sözer, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Dr. Nesli Sözer is a Principal Investigator at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd. and works on the refinement of ingredients and structures of 3D printed food. She will give a speech on this subject and the latest developments in the field during the 3D Food Printing Conference, on June 28, 2017, in Venlo, The Netherlands.

“At the moment the fact that 3D food printing is not generally known to the greater public has to do with challenges associated with ingredient mix rheology (study of flow of mass), shape and structure accuracy, material memory, compatibility with traditional food processing technologies and the low printing speed of 3D printing machines,” according to Dr. Nesli Sözer, “Until now 3D food printing is mostly limited to special designs which require high precision printing. Something you can do with the high end food printers, but is more difficult for the cheaper machines available to the general market. But printing speed is essential to the future acceptance of 3D food printing.”

Dr. Sözer is specialized in food material science and food ingredient/product design. She has a specific focus on utilization of plant matrices, like dietary fiber and protein. Recently she has been working on the use of 3D food printing technology towards structure formation. Structures are depend on the ingredients used for the printing. 3D food printing is a disruptive technology and still under development to find extensive value-chains. Present applications of 3D food printing mostly rely on ingredients like processed cheese, cake frosting, chocolate and paste/gel based structures. To develop a better structure experience for the consumer it is necessary that ingredient producers, the food industry, printer manufacturers, service providers, retail and consumers work together.

Read the full interview on the 3D Food Printing Conference website.

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