Manufacturing logistics and procurement – February 2021

01 March 2021

Developments in logistics
ASTM has announced the publication of Smart and Sustainable Manufacturing in the Post-COVID-19 Manufacturing Era. In this special issue, authors present possible actions from both practical and policy perspectives. You can download the special after filling in your details.
The new Digital 2021 report from DataReportal shows that connected tech became an even more essential part of people’s lives over the past year, with social media, ecommerce, streaming content, and video games all seeing significant growth in the past 12 months.

Artificial Intelligence alliance and developments in smart manufacturing
The Netherlands and Germany are joining forces to promote the exchange and applications of artificial intelligence (AI) between companies. For this purpose, the German-Dutch field lab Artificial Intelligence for Digital Twins (AI4DT) has been established.
Researchers from the Yildiz Technical University have published a paper (355 kB) in the Proceedings of 10th International Symposium on Intelligent Manufacturing and Service Systems entitled Product quality control in industrial manufacturing band and packaging automation with linear moving arm.

Supply chain challenges and trends
The January-February edition (27.3 MB) of Supply Chain Management Review addresses the challenges faced by the e-commerce supply chain.
Cloudleaf has surveyed U.S. supply chain decision makers in the pharmaceutical and food & beverage industries. Product damage or spoilage (30%), temperature excursions (25%), unexpected delays (24%), lost or misplaced inventory (21%) and compliance issues (20%) are the top 5 current supply challenges plaguing these two industries. You can download the report after filling in you details.
The new global trends study (1.1 MB) The great shakeout by Kearney, shows how food processing, packaging, distribution and sales will evolve as a result of COVID-19.
According to a recent report (in Dutch, 6 MB) by Panteia (in Dutch), the current growth of courier and parcel services is structural; in the next five years, an explosive structural growth of 31% to 42% is expected.
Research by Orange Business Services shows that the supply chains of 40% of multinationals worldwide were unable to cope with the COVID-19 crisis. This has dramatically changed attitudes towards risk. You can download the report after filling in your details.

New robot developments and information about drone regulations
The Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management has published Q&As (in Dutch) on the new European rules for flying with drones as of 31 December 2020.
TU Delft and the Westfälische Hochschule present an optical flow-based learning process that allows robots to estimate distances based on the shape, colour and texture of objects.
Inspired by the colour-changing skin of cuttlefish, octopuses and squids, Rutgers engineers have created a 3D-printed smart gel that changes shape when exposed to light, becomes “artificial muscle” and may lead to new military camouflage, soft robotics and flexible displays.
Locus Robotics has published an eBook entitled Multi-Bot Fulfillment Solution about the future of robotics in a post-pandemic world. You can download the eBook after filling in your details.

NVC members receive this information with all the relevant links in the monthly NVC Members-only Update. If you have any questions, please contact us:, +31-(0)182-512411