Using i-dolly for local distribution of container trailers to logistic terminals from a dry port
Research Project , 2017 – 2020

This project application aims on conducting research on automating transports of 40 ft container on semitrailer units from a logistic hub, called dry port, in Viared, Borås to local logistic terminals. The technology will be both environmental friendly by using fully electric propulsion and with improved vehicle lifetime productivity (VLP). The VLP improvement is based upon unmanned transports, reduced driver/operator cost and removed diesel fuel cost where the semitrailer units are towed by an intelligent and electrically propelled converter dolly (i-dolly) with automatic coupling and parking of semi-trailers.

The i-dolly is aimed to automatically connect next semi-trailer with a 40ft container from the dry port and by recorded route paths drive to the designated logistic terminal within a radius of 5-10 km from the dry port. The maximum speed will be lower than 30 km/h. In future, when the system is scaled up, an operator will be managing several i-dollies on different missions and from a remote site. The vehicle environment sensing will partly use what is developed in the FFI -project AutoFreight [79] aiming on automation driving of A-double consisting of (tractor+semitrailer+dolly+semitrailer) from Gothenburg port to the dry port hub in Viared, Borås. One important aspect is the coupling and de-coupling of trailers which needs to be automated.

Therefore Volvo Group will work together with the Swedish coupling manufacturer co-operate in this project with VBG to better understand the challenges ahead with new interfaces for e.g. hardware, communication, when full automation is expected from heavy vehicle transports with trailers. Here Chalmers and Volvo Group will conduct the vehicle motion functionality development together.


Bengt J H Jacobson (contact)

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences (M2), Vehicle Engineering and Autonomous Systems

Toheed Ghandriz

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences (M2), Vehicle Engineering and Autonomous Systems

Leo Laine

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences (M2)



Vänersborg, Sweden

Volvo Group

Gothenburg, Sweden



Project ID: 2017-03036
Funding Chalmers participation during 2017–2020

Related Areas of Advance and Infrastructure

Sustainable development

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