Peter Boisen, operations manager from AFLD I/S, discusses the route plan with one of the drivers.
Waste management places enormous demands on logistics. Operations often need to be coordinated between multiple Municipalities, orders can cover large and isolated areas, and more and more fractions are being added. Now new technology can deliver a data-driven solution that gives citizens a better emptying for fewer tax dollars.
Waste management experiences several challenges that put pressure on the sector. This applies both to staffing, route planning and efficiency, but also to increased service demands from citizens, industry and authorities.
- Therefore, we experience great responsiveness to our BrainyBins system, where small fill level sensors in waste containers register the fill level and send this data via cloud to our BrainyBins software. Based on our forecasts, you can organise the optimal service route in a given area. In this way, we avoid unnecessary driving to half-full or empty containers, explains Torben Østerby, Strategic sales manager at Sønderborg-based Maacks ApS, which is behind BrainyBins and the sensor technology that makes it possible.
Dynamic, digital route planning
The BrainyBins system collects data from containers with sensors - fill level detectors - and in addition entries from drivers, weighing data, maximum emptying interval and any fixed emptying intervals are used. You can automatically or manually plan the optimal route based on container type, fraction, the cars associated with a given fraction, and a forecast based on already collected data from previous emptying’s. The daily operations manager draws up the final route plan, which the drivers see in an app.
- BrainyBins ensures optimal utilisation of resources, and we not only use the latest sensor technology, but have also expanded the system with statistics and forecasting tools. The system provides an easy and intuitive overview of all containers, bins, and cars. It is a good tool for both employees and management, states Torben Østerby, and the customers prove him right.
- It is a big advantage with the BrainyBins system, because we have an overview of the containers, know when they need to be emptied, and the emptying can be ordered automatically. We have thus freed up a lot of resources for other tasks in the municipality, says Rasmus Vestergaard from Redux, Waste & Recycling in Kolding Municipality.
Improvement and additional savings
Although the BrainyBins system comes up with a proposal for an optimised emptying route, the municipality's or the haulier employees can adjust their routes based on knowledge and experience. In many places, you typically want to run the routes on fixed days, but with forecasts and adaptations, you can reduce the need for driving and reduce both CO2 and NOx emissions.2– som NOx-udledningerne.
At the same time, precious time is saved in connection with the registration and administration of the waste transport as well as for statistical work. Finally, BrainyBins is a user-friendly invoicing tool for the drivers, as they can generate invoices including emptying’s, locations and weight. This is an advantage for smaller hauliers, as they often do not have their own invoicing systems for this.
- The emptying here is outsourced to Nordby Renovation, who use the fill level sensors to empty more rationally and with focus on less transport time. I also use the system myself to check whether everything is as it should be, says Line Lambæk-Knudsen, engineer and port officer in Fanø Municipality.
The dynamic route is displayed in the app. The driver is always updated on the fill level of the containers and the current emptying route.
Experiences across six municipalities
Since 1975, Dansk Affaldsforening AFLD I/S has solved waste-related tasks for Billund, Hedensted, Herning, Ikast-Brande, Ringkøbing-Skjern and Varde municipalities. They often have different requirements for the service, and the recycling stations are spread over 5,850 km2. Here they have used the BrainyBins system since 2018.2. Her har de brugt BrainyBins systemet siden 2018.
- We are owned by six municipalities, and therefore a good waste management tool is important to us. The system makes the planning dynamic and data-driven, and our people can contribute with input on high seasons for holiday home areas, town parties and festivals, where we know from experience that more frequent emptying is required, says operations manager Peter Boisen from AFLD and elaborates:
- Out in the municipalities, they have knowledge, and it is important that it is used, so that citizens can experience getting the desired service. Typically, the municipalities want to empty the containers when 70-80 percent full, and here BrainyBins and PickUP at recycling sites provide a good basis for decision-making.
The future offers even more benefits
The newest generation of fill level detectors use radar technology and are mounted on top of containers and bins. Radar technology is the best choice, as it gives more precise data about the actual fill level and the signal is not disturbed by dirty lenses and the like. The data of the fill level is continuously transferred via cloud to the BrainyBins software.
- It is a technology that can change daily operations because it works, and because the employees experience a high degree of usability that fits into their daily life. We see it as an effective tool of achieving better goals, says operations manager Thomas Søgaard from Rudersdal Municipality.
The close dialogue with customers is important for our developers at Maacks, who together are constantly working on further developing the solution, explains Strategic Sales Manager Torben Østerby and elaborates:
- The aim is to offer municipalities and utility companies a system so flexible that they can save unnecessary driving in isolated areas or adjust driving in sparsely populated areas and areas with holiday homes. Bear in mind that with some waste companies, the fleet of trucks drives 40,000 kilometres or more per month – this offers enormous savings potential.
In conclusion, Torben Østerby from Maacks ApS estimates that, conservatively speaking, the number of emptying’s can be reduced by a minimum of 10 percent and in many cases up to 50 percent if it is a well-driven waste company that introduces the new, digital technology.