April 16, 2024
Logistics Tech

Emission-free robot makes Christmas deliveries in Helsinki 

HeRo robot delivers parcels to customers’ doors in an hour

Helsinki City’s innovation company, Forum Virium Helsinki, has begun evaluating an autonomous robot to smoothen last-mile deliveries, given that the growing logistics industry increasingly relies on automation and emissions reduction in deliveries to customers.

The cute-looking emission-free robot, HeRo (short for ‘Helsinki Robot’), can deliver parcels to customers’ doors within an hour.

During the holiday season, parcel lockers are complete, and those who select home delivery must often wait at home for hours, awaiting the delivery of their packages. It is in this scenario that HeRo comes to the rescue!

Manufactured by the LMAD company, the electric and autonomously moving delivery robot’s functionality and public acceptance were tested for the first time in Kalasatama district in Helsinki between May and August when the interactive voice-enabled robot delivered tools to nearby construction sites. 

Public acknowledgement

Satu Reijonen, Project Manager at Forum Virium Helsinki, said the robot was well-received at the Helsinki worksites, with international smart city development innovators and operators coming to Helsinki from Asia to see the robot in operation. 

In the second test phase, the autonomous robot is being studied for conducting emission-free online shopping deliveries. Given climate change, this much-needed service aims to fulfil countries’ net zero goals.

“We are studying consumers’ reception of the new service and if this could be the future of smarter logistics,” said Reijonen, who believes that the service could be in demand, especially in Helsinki City districts that do not have a post office of their own, such as Jätkäsaari and Ruoholahti.

In the next phase, in spring 2024, Forum Virium Helsinki will expand cooperation with various logistics operators to optimise the robot’s delivery routes to save resources.

HeRo has already begun making Christmas deliveries in Ruoholahti and North Jätkäsaari – two Helsinki districts.

Featured image: The HeRo robot operating in Ruoholahti district, Helsinki. Image: Vesa Laitinen

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto is an award-winning journalist with wide-ranging Middle East and Asia experience in the tech, aerospace, defence, luxury watchmaking, business, automotive, and fashion verticals. He is passionate about conserving endangered native wildlife globally. Arnold enjoys 4x4 off-roading, camping and exploring global destinations off the beaten track.
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