STAD and Catalyst: connected automated transport

Project STAD (Spatial and Transport Impacts of Automated Driving) and the program Catalyst view aspects of autonomous driving and connected driving. For SmartPort, the focus within these projects is on truck platooning.



The STAD (Spatial and Transport Impacts of Automated Driving) study examines the impact of autonomous driving for transport of both passengers and freight. For goods, specific attention is paid to the feasibility of convoy driving (truck platooning): what are the preconditions that must be met in order for convoys to be formed?

The research is done on the basis of simulations and models. Qualitative research also explores how drivers view truck platooning.

The focus within the Catalyst project (Connected and Automated Transport and Logistics Living Lab) is slightly broader: in addition to the driver’s perspective, other forms of connected driving are also considered, including the interaction with traffic control systems. Living labs investigate how that works in practice.

Both the STAD project and the CATALYST program cover various aspects of autonomous driving and connected driving. For SmartPort, the focus is on:

  1. The development of planning tools and algorithms for the formation of platoons.
  2. Preparing the driver for developments in the field of connected driving.

3. Bringing knowledge about truck platooning from the lab to (SME) transport parties. This knowledge enables these companies to follow the development of truck platooning, to train drivers and to proceed with implementation.


  • Fewer CO2
  • Better use of trucks (the operating time becomes less dependent on the operating time of the driver, and can therefore be extended to more than 8 hours per day).
  • Insight into “the driver of the future”.
  • A planning algorithm that makes it possible to form better platoons, including all the benefits that it provides.


  • Resistance of drivers.
  • Interaction with infrastructure (such as traffic lights).
  • Heavy traffic causes heavy load on the infrastructure.


Connected automated transport (CAT) is getting closer to actual implementation.


Selection: Cornelissen, DHL, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Port of Rotterdam Authority, MRDH (Metropolitan region Rotterdam The Hague), NWO, Delft University, TNO, Overbeek.


2016 – 2021

This project is part of the Smart Logistics roadmap. For more information about this project or this roadmap, please contact project developer Anique Kuijpers.