Cool Run: Hubl's solution to multi-temperature last mile delivery

Lead Participant: Hubl Logistics Ltd

Abstract

The Cool Run Pod, hereafter called CR Pod, is an innovative new product that will reduce the harmful non-tail-pipe emissions from transport refrigeration units as per the scope of the SBRI Competition. CR Pod brings together several existing and emerging technologies to create the world’s first non-diesel, last mile, independently monitored refrigerated delivery system that can operate as a fully independent system or part of an automated distribution network with high component recyclability and reparability. CR Pod has been developed by Hubl with support from the University of Lincoln, hereafter to referred to UoL, to link the proposed new product with current research and analysis on the emissions savings which could be achieved through its commercialisation. Studies to date have identified that the CR Pod could lead to the removal of all refrigeration units from vans and lorries in urban areas, saving an estimated 120m Kg of Co2 and associated Nox emissions per annum in the UK in line with the Clean Air Strategy Chapter 5 - ‘Action to reduce emissions from transport’. CR Pod has a clear plan for commercialisation and route to market. The fresh and frozen food market is exponentially growing due to the demand for grocery home delivery, convenience store fulfilment and the growing restaurant and foodservice market, but currently relies on the use of specialist refrigerated vehicles which are on the rise for urban deliveries. These are currently cooled by compressor driven diesel-fuelled cooling units mounted on to the truck to provide power for the refrigeration system or in the case of electric vehicles, they draw power from the principal drivetrain or additional batteries. In 2017, Professor Toby Peters, Chair in Power and Cold Economy, University of Birmingham, said: “Until now, nobody has given transport refrigeration units a thought. They are unregulated, use out-dated, fossil-fuelled technology and are disproportionately polluting. What’s worse, their pollution is concentrated on city streets where it does the most damage to our health.” CR Pod responds to this and the scope of this SBRI Competition through the development of an alternative concept to mobile refrigeration units – a lightweight, durable, cost-effective containment system for the transportation of food and pharmaceuticals, primarily for the last mile of delivery (meaning from the point of order assemble to the final destination and delivered within an eight hour delivery round). The CR Pod completely removes the needs for a compressor driven diesel-fuelled unit. It is a disruptive technology, integrating a range of innovative technologies, not previously used in combination in the multi-temperature delivery market, to provide a product which can be easily integrated into the logistics supply chain. The CR Pod is technically innovative and through extensive research and development, Hubl believes it can provide a simple solution in terms of deliverability, scalability and affordability, with a clear route to market and huge potential to support the Clean Air Strategy and UK Industrial Strategy. It is also replicable and scalable across the globe where markets are already growing.

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

Hubl Logistics Ltd, BINGHAM £1,371,841 £ 1,371,841

Publications

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