Celerum is developing novel artificial intelligence to improve the operational efficiency of logistics and supply chains. The technology also has the potential to address a host of other complex scientific, engineering and industrial challenges.

As well as helping organisations improve their advanced planning and scheduling, the software works in real time, allowing them to respond immediately in the most effective way to unforeseen circumstances. For example, if an accident blocks a road, the software will immediately work out the most efficient alternative routes to redirect lorries, automatically accounting for the knock-on effects on the rest of a fleet, perhaps by rescheduling other deliveries.

The Company’s approach has been proven in a number of projects, including a knowledge transfer project partnership, backed by Innovate UK, with one of Scotland’s biggest privately-owned hauliers ARR Craib to maximise vehicle use and fleet effectiveness.

Celerum is a spin out from the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen. Founder Professor John McCall has more than 25 years research experience in nature-inspired computing, which develops software and algorithms based on natural processes and behaviours.

Ant colonies, for example, are extremely effective at finding the best routes to food sources. Celerum digitally mimics how they do so to solve human logistical problems, such as automatically redirecting lorries to the most efficient alternative routes in the event of accidents, traffic jams or other unforeseen circumstances.

Other techniques include particle swarm optimisation, based on how birds and fish behave in flocks and schools, and genetic algorithms, based on natural selection and evolutionary genetics.