innovative start-up ( McGili Canada) deals with smart locker banks for pickup
and delivery in the context of omni-channel business-to-consumer logistics and
supply chain. Its main contribution is the framework and conceptualization of
hyper-connected smart lockers network designs as an alternative to home
delivery for enabling to meet the challenges towards efficiently and
sustainably achieving fast and convenient business-to-consumer pickups and
deliveries. It gradually explores alternative designs from current practices to
solutions exploiting Physical Internet concepts such as the PI handling containers. We have
identified key relative advantages and disadvantages of alternative solutions,
synthesizes strategic insights for industry, and provides real challenges and
opportunities in global omni-channel logistics market.
lockers, Physical Internet (PI), PI-containers, Last Mile Delivery,
Hyper-connected City Logistics, omni-channel Supply Chains
advantageous in terms of implementation, fixed capacity smart locker banks can
be inadequate when demand evolves or is difficult to predict. The challenge of
capacity management and configuration arises in future cities, which is the
backbone of the next design proposed.
Solution to the Challenge in
and their modular dimensions bring opportunities to develop new logistics
designs rethinking the way we deal with physical goods in future sustainable
cities. We propose the use of PI handling containers as pickup and delivery
lockers, as an alternative to modular lockers and towers: The PI-containers
become smart mobile lockers.
proposed pickup and delivery locker bank architecture, PI-boxes (handling
containers) are proposed to be used as smart mobile lockers. The structure of PI-boxes,
being robust, reliable and seal together, as well as their communication
capabilities and their eco-friendly nature, make them suitable to used as
efficient and safe pickup and delivery lockers, protecting physical goods from
weather conditions and theft, while ensuring monitoring and communication of
its content to logistics systems.
locker banks with modular towers and lockers have the potential to mitigate the
disadvantages of fixed-configuration locker banks by allowing for capacity
management of the network to adjust to variability of demand patterns (global
demand and package sizes mix) but more complex, requiring dedicated inventory,
capacity management and distribution systems.