DHL has broken ground on a new DHL Americas Innovation Centre in Rosemont, Illinois which will be used to showcase technologies and logistics innovations that the company is already implementing as well as its vision of the future.
The new facility is due to open summer next year and joins similar centres in Troisdorf, Germany, and the Asia Pacific Innovation Centre in Singapore.
“With our third Innovation Centre worldwide, we will be able to create a platform for research and collaborative innovation between DHL customers, start-ups, academia, industry partners, and innovation experts in the Americas region,” said Matthias Heutger, SVP, global head of innovation and commercial development at DHL. “This visionary innovation centre will further promote and nurture our worldwide leading position as the logistics innovation frontrunner in one of our key markets. It will also help us to further build on successful partnerships that we have established with technology leaders and innovative start-ups in the region,” he said.
The company has already introduced a number of technologies to boost productivity in its business. DHL Supply Chain, the contract logistics specialist within Deutsche Post DHL Group, has seen average productivity increases of 15% in trials of augmented reality technology in warehouses, with smart glasses that provide visual displays of order picking instructions and item locations. It has also deployed drones with surveillance cameras to ramp up security at warehousing sites in Brazil and Mexico.
The company is also making use of robots with DHL Supply Chain using collaborative robots designed to help with repetitive and precise tasks, such as picking and packing, in a number of its North American warehouses.
As well as showcasing existing new technologies the centre will also look at what the world and its transport infrastructure might look like in 2050.
Image credit: DHL