Man Directing Drone

New Drone System Developed For Long Distance Delivery

Civil drone operators are currently restricted to line-of-sight operation of one drone at a time to avoid collisions. Satellite operator, Inmarsat Group Holdings, has partnered with Altitude Angel LTD to operate drones over long distances safely by integrating a backup satellite connection for areas with no land-based communications . If they can prove safe operation to regulators, fleets of remotely operated drones could be deployed to transport tons of goods. Read more about this development at:

Read more about this development at:
https://www.ttnews.com/articles/satellite-firm-develops-long-distance-system-delivery-drones

(Photo Credit: Chip Chipman/Bloomberg News)

Fixed-wing drones that are launched by catapults and recovered using this arrestor system (from Zipline)

Drone Manufacturer Asks FAA To Approve Unmanned Medical Supply Flights In Response To Pandemic

Zipline is offering to setup a drone-based supply chain across the US for distribution of emergency supplies such as medicine, PPE gear, test kits and even blood to ease supply chain blockages. The drones are launched by catapult and recovered by an arrestor system. The company has been operating the drones to deliver emergency medical supplies to remote locations in Africa for several years.  Medical supplies are dropped by parachute to healthcare workers and rushed to areas suffering severe shortages.

Read more at:
https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2020/april/13/zipline-pitches-drones-for-us-coronavirus-relief

(Photo credit: From Zipline via AOPA: Zipline created these fixed-wing drones.)

White Water Boat with cargo with "Houston Express"

Manufacturers Who Cut Inventories And Profit Margins To The Bone Are The Most Vulnerable To The Current Crisis

In order for western manufacturers to remain competitive, many components are sourced from China. When China delays manufacturing, western manufacturers’ ability to finish their products and deliver them to market is impeded. To compound that problem, inventories are typically stockpiled for just 15-30 days due to cost-saving inventory management methods such as “just in time delivery”. That spells double trouble for manufacturers and consumers alike.

Read more about how the current crisis is impacting global supply chains at:
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/03/supply-chains-and-coronavirus/608329/

(Photo credit: Julius Silver)

 

Cargo trucks on a road with cars behind them

Trade Continues Despite US Border Closures with Canada and Mexico

Recent announcements of US border closures with Canada and Mexico state that the borders remain open for trade. Canada’s Transport Minister Marc Garneau explained that truck drivers, train and airline crews are exempt from the restrictions.

Read more about the border closures at: https://www.ttnews.com/articles/us-canada-agree-close-border-remain-open-trade
&
https://www.ttnews.com/articles/us-mexico-border-close-amid-spread-coronavirus

 

(Photo credit:Trucks on the road. (John Sommers II for Transport Topics)

Back of aircraft being loaded. Aircraft marked "Polar"

Passenger Travel Ban From Europe Causes Severe Disruption Of Air Freight Industry

Some US importers are unaware that the travel ban for passenger flights from Europe will impact their air cargo shipments. The reality is that over 60% of air cargo is carried by passenger aircraft. As a result of the travel ban from Europe to the US, shippers are competing for space on a handful of freighter aircraft, pushing up rates, delaying cargo and diverting traffic through non-European airlines.

Read more at:
https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-travel-ban-is-expected-to-snarl-trans-atlantic-airfreight-11584040963

Flying Car concept - Aeromobil VTOL concept via breakingdefense.com

Air Force Comes Up With Ingenious RFQ To Expedite Development Of Flying Cars

To promote the development of EVTOL cars, the Air Force will issue an RFQ for a program named Agility Prime, soliciting proposals from commercial developers to design a flying car for troops and cargo. The benefit to commercial developers is that military airspace will be made available to the winning bidders to test their aircraft. Access to military ranges will reduce the time required for certification by the FAA by creating a faster track to proof of airworthiness. Developing the technology for both military and commercial applications at inception would prevent the loss of an entire supply chain to early commercial investors, as was the case with the drone market, now controlled by Chinese investors. Uber and Nasa are working on similar concept vehicles for commercial applications.

Read more at: https://breakingdefense.com/2020/02/air-force-pushes-ahead-on-flying-car-challenge/

Uber’s Flying car concept via breakingdefense.com

(Photo credits:
Above: Uber’s Flying car concept via breakingdefense.com
In header: Aeromobil VTOL concept via breakingdefense.com)

Panda Bei Bei

Transporting Large Animals Internationally

Bei Bei, a large panda, was flown from the US to China aboard a FedEx freighter aircraft. Bei Bei’s 16 hour flight from the US to China was made in a purpose built crate. Before transport, Bei Bei was encouraged to play in the crate so that the trip would be made in an environment he was comfortable  in. The crate included his favorite snacks –  bamboo, apples and pears,  biscuits,  sweet potatoes and as much  water as he could drink.

Read more about transporting large animals internationally at: https://www.ttnews.com/articles/moving-manatees-elephants-and-pandas-requires-careful-planning-preparation

(Photo Credit: Bei Bei by FedEx)

Railcar being lifted

Journey of a Typical Railcar from Factory Through Locomotion in Another Country

The international journey of new railcars from factory through installation on a track overseas, is not as simple as booking trailers, a ship and cranes.

It starts with engineering modifications to the railcars to create lifting beams and lashing rings. COG calculations are made to ensure the lifting plan keeps the railcar balanced through the lifting operation. At the same time, early shipments are dispatched with tracks, welding equipment and materials, communication and signal systems, depot structures and fixtures as well as track maintenance equipment.

A local crew starts installing the tracks and associated equipment at destination while the railcars are being built and custom fitted with lifting and lashing points for the journey.

This complex process is designed and managed by specialists like Overseas Brokers, with the help of marine engineers who assist in creating lifting diagrams noting center of gravity,  drafting of required crane spreader specifications, making angle and clearance calculations, as well as oversight by marine insurance surveyors who supervise every step of the loading/unloading, lashing, lifting, delivery and placement on the final track at destination.

Note: The lifting configuration of the railcar in the photo is designed to maintain a 90 degree angle and keep the railcar level when lifted, to prevent the lifting cables from causing damage to the side panels of the railcar.

Read more about such projects at:

https://www.stattimes.com/royal-cargo-moves-multiple-unit-trains-of-philippine-national-railways-logistics

(Photo Credit – above: Via The STAT Trade Times: “This shipment is the first delivery of PNR trains and seven more new trainsets are set to arrive in 2020.”)

https://www.topgear.com.ph/news/motoring-news/pnr-indonesia-train-coaches-a4354-20191211

Railcar (Philippine National Railways)

(Photo credit: DOTR – via TopGear)

Earth as seen from Apollo

Good News For Office Furniture Manufacturers Offering Global Distribution – More Companies Are Expected To Join Globalization Trend

According to research conducted by Intertrust, a financial services provider to many Fortune 500 clients, 72% of companies surveyed expect to expand to multiple new countries over the next 4 years. The survey showed the biggest obstacles are regulatory challenges and recruiting local staff.

Read more about the survey results, obstacles and outsourced solutions at: https://workplaceinsight.net/most-business-leaders-think-that-major-firms-will-continue-to-globalise/

(Photo credit: Workplace Insight)

 

Trading desk install

Innovant Partners With Overseas Brokers For Large Trading Desk Project In Montreal

We provide global logistics solutions for the contract furniture industry

Here’s just one example: A 600 desk project we handed in Montreal for a top tier global financial services firm. These are height adjustable desks, made in the US by Innovant, a leading manufacturer of trading desks, benching, private offices and conference room furniture.