Trikala pilots use of 'delivery droids' and becomes European technology pioneer

delivery droid trikala

Although for most Greece is supposedly a place of lost opportunities and the difficulty of following what is happening in the rest of the "civilized world", there are also bright exceptions, as Trikala shows with its "delivery droid".

The new innovative service currently being tested in the Thessalian city is the use of autonomous robots for the distribution and transport of goods and parcels.

The so-called delivery droids are provided by the Italian company YAPE and the whole program is in collaboration with e-Trikala, the University Research Institute of Communication and Computer Systems (EPISEY), and the University of Genoa, under the auspices of the European program SΗOW.

5 17These little robots were already used in the "Elf Mill" on Christmas days, carrying the letters of children from the "Post Office" to Santa Claus.

The next stage is for these robots to move around the pedestrian street of Asklepiou in the centre of Trikala, carrying various things, from newspapers and mail to small packages to the shops located on the street.

These robots can be trained to recognise a mapped area, and have the ability to recognise and avoid obstacles. Which means that they will not obstruct pedestrian traffic, but will be able to coexist with them and follow the flow of traffic.

The aim of this pilot is to study whether these robotic transport vehicles can be reliable and useful in small-scale transport work within a dense urban fabric.

In Trikala, the study of these robots is done for the first time not in closed spaces with given and controlled conditions, but in a real environment with people and moving obstacles so that their performance and behaviour in the complex environment of a real city can be tested.

Deliveries of this scale, the so-called “Last Mile”, are particularly important for large cities and pedestrian streets of historic centres, where the traffic of cars is prohibited and could in the future be replaced by fleets of such robots.

The robots used in Trikala are manufactured in Italy, by the YAPE company. They are about the height of a wheelchair, can carry up to 20 kg of cargo, have a range of at least 40 km and a maximum speed of 20 km/h.

Trikala is the first city in Europe to test these robots in real conditions. The Anytime company participates in the program for their insurance and Vodafone for communication with the management centre.

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Speaking to AMNA, the mayor of Trikkaia and president of KEDE Dimitris Papastergiou said: "In Trikala we are implementing yet another pilot program that is related and concerns the future."

"We gain know-how and experience, having already participated in a number of innovative programs, testing new technologies.

This new challenge is related to micro-transportation and the European cooperation, gives us possibilities to exploit the conclusions of the program for the benefit of citizens and cities.

"Together with the autonomous vehicles that we will soon launch again, we are exploring aspects of the not-so-distant, after all, future."

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