New Horizon 2020 project “IW-NET” will foster innovation in inland waterway transportation

28 May 2020 - Smart Freight Centre is proud to be a partner of the IW-NET project. In collaboration with 25 other European companies, research institutions and public organizations we will work together towards emission reduction from inland waterway transportation (IWT).

Exploiting inland waterway transportation (IWT) is an essential ingredient to reach the European Commission's ambitious target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transportation in the upcoming decades. Over the next 36 months, the research project IW-NET will support the EC’s strategic efforts by enabling and providing innovation for the IWT landscape.

Creating the “Innovation-driven Collaborative European Inland Waterways Transport Network”

The consortium of 26 companies, research institutions and public organizations from Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania and Spain has teamed up to develop and prove technological solutions and improvements for inland waterway transport. The vision for the upcoming years is to create an “Innovation-driven Collaborative European Inland Waterways Transport Network” (IW-NET).

Digitalization, infrastructure improvements and innovative vessel technologies

“In order to sustainably shift more transport to inland waterways, we need to change more than just one parameter”, coordinator Nils Meyer-Larsen from the Institute of Shipping Economics and Logistics (ISL) in Bremen and Bremerhaven explains. “Therefore, we will follow a holistic approach which not only covers digitalization and multimodal integration in inland waterway transportation but provides solutions for improved infrastructure management as well as for the next generation of vessels.
The heart of the project is the IW-NET Living Lab that will serve as a testbed for the technological approaches and solutions. Different application scenarios will comprise a diverse set of experiments along representative corridors in Germany, Belgium, France and Austria and will thereby create valuable insights on how to develop the future of European inland waterway transport.

Collaboration is key: Smart Freight Centre's role

The role of Smart Freight Centre (SFC) within the project will include transferring best practice in GHG emission calculation and associated data collection from the GLEC Framework, and developing it to specific context of the inland waterway sector. SFC will also support partners to assess the potential impacts of project measures in the short, medium and long terms. A key part of this will be taking the lead on compiling a roadmap of IWT infrastructure developments to 2030.

For more information on SFC's role in the IW-NET project, contact Alan Lewis, Technical Development Director.

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