The French National Centre for Space Studies or CNES, the social & technological innovation institute MATRICE, and the VEDECOM Institute (one of the main actors in the field of autonomous vehicles in France) are pleased to launch Epleï, the innovative solution for logistical actors. This solution is the direct result of the work of the Smart Mobilities Lab created by the three partners in October 2019.
The Smart Mobilities Lab (in French: Lab Mobilités Intelligentes) aims to achieve a shared objective: to invent new services and habits in the field of smart mobility through the use of satellite observation data. Mobility is one of the three strategic approaches of Connect by CNES, an initiative that aims to work closely with communities by using space technology and solutions in the economic activities of companies of all sizes. The Lab team includes people with complementary backgrounds providing multidisciplinary expertise such as a doctoral student in geography at the Sorbonne who is also the technical director of a company specialising in transporting goods alongside two designer/developers.
This team is assisted by experts from the CNES, Matrice, and VEDECOM. The six months of the project have allowed the Lab team to engage in forward-thinking considerations of new uses of satellite imaging and the needs of the mobility and transport sectors. Through an exploratory approach and design thinking tools, three solutions were pre-identified. The solution retained at the end of the process is an innovative service for the logistics sector for which there was a proof of concept (POC) from January to March 2020.
The Epleï solution involves supplying critical information for making decisions about sites for establishing logistics warehouses in a short period of time for any part of the world without any physical travel required.
The two client cases for the proof of concept confirmed the following benefits: A major increase in efficiency in the pre-qualification of potential sites (in terms of man-hours & travel), a significant gain in analysis quality by avoiding the perception bias inherent to human analysis and by providing an extremely precise, flexible tool for working at different scales.
Many actors are likely to use the solution:
- transport and logistics professionals
- financial and logistics real estate actors
- regional governments
The solution will be launched commercially in the second half of 2020 and a company will be created with Lucie Yeresyan (firstname.lastname@example.org), a member of the Smart Mobilities Lab, at its head. This initial service will be supplemented and enriched over time with features that use artificial intelligence and new products such as a geographic information system (GIS) and an interactive map.