SAILOR EU research project: Smart lAst mILe cOmmeRce

The objective of the EU-funded SAILOR project is to develop real-time solutions to the matching problems of parcel delivery companies and the final customer, shortening routing distance as well as increase first-time deliveries and reverse logistics in the last mile. The final goal of SAILOR is to improve cost efficiency and decrease congestions and pollutions in last mile commerce. A prototype demonstration of SAILOR will be put to in four European cities: Amsterdam (Netherlands), Borlänge (Sweden), Graz (Austria) and the San Sebastian area (Spain) together with local stakeholders.

Presently, delivery of parcels, in particular for consumers, typically ends at a pick-up point making the consumer managing the last mile transport herself. To the extent a parcel delivery company makes a direct handover, it usually works as a static routing of the (motor) vehicle stipulating a time window for deliverance and a place (the residential address). This is illustrated in the picture of a truck travelling the route passing points A-C finding no one at the place in point A and being delayed at C because of a waiting time for unloading.


The illustration concerns deliveries, but the same structure applies for returns. The SAILOR system is expected to remedy these matching problems. Upon coordination, delivery to customer A is re-routed to the place where the receiver happens to be and the unloading at C is swifter because of slot availability information. The solid arrows illustrate the actual trip while the dashed the statically planned one, and their length illustrate the trip time along the route. Delivery by bike also appears in the picture as in some of the demos, the parcel delivery company will use cargo-bikes in their last mile deliverance.

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