Fujitsu Quantum-Inspired Optimization Services Cut Traffic Jams and CO2 Emissions at Hamburg Port

News facts:
  • In a world-first, Hamburg Port Authority and Fujitsu demonstrate how quantum-inspired algorithms cut traffic jams to optimize supply chain logistics and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Fujitsu’s Digital Annealer accelerates logistics flows, reduces port traffic congestion and cuts CO2 emissions by up to 9% for more sustainable transport of goods
  • Addresses common challenge for logistics infrastructure owners and operators – how to increase supply chain capacity within a finite physical footprint

Munich, December 08, 2021

Supply chain logjams are currently causing disruption, shortages and inflationary cost pressures across the globe. In a major step toward solving this global problem, the Hamburg Port Authority (HPA) has successfully demonstrated an approach to the more sustainable transportation of goods. The solution hinges on applying Fujitsu’s quantum-inspired technology to accelerate logistics flows, which reduces port traffic congestion and cuts CO2 emissions.

Working with Fujitsu, HPA has proven the potential to reduce congestion in its harbor area. Applying Fujitsu’s quantum-inspired Digital Annealer1 technology and services to real traffic data, HPA has established the possibility of optimizing traffic throughput across the harbor area, while still leveraging the existing traffic control infrastructure.

Instead of local management of individual traffic-light managed crossings, the quantum-inspired approach optimizes the entire grid. This significantly cuts dwell times for ships, trucks and cars, resulting in faster supply chain interactions – and leads to lower levels of greenhouse gases.

Through the use of the Fujitsu Digital Annealer, the HPA has noted significant improvements in areas including:

  • Reduced travel time up to 15% for cars and trucks in the supply chain
  • Faster journeys to and from work for employees
  • Lower CO2 emissions from trucks and cars
  • Faster turnaround for container ships leading to increased flow of goods
  • Greater capacity to handle trucks in the confined space of the HPA
  • Less traffic congestion within the harbor area

The approach is a world-first for HPA, which is developing a new, holistic way to optimize all its available infrastructure of roads, crossings and bridges controlled by traffic lights. These are within an environment constrained by tight geographical limits, the cost of shipping schedule overruns, and specific maritime factors such as tides.

Hermann D. Grünfeld, Head of Traffic Management at HPA, says: “With the global demand for transportation growing relentlessly year on year, logistics infrastructure owners and operators, like HPA, have to find solutions to the challenge of a finite physical footprint for most assets. It’s a common supply chain issue today and will get more important in the coming years. At the same time, we are seeking to reduce our carbon footprint as part of global efforts to address the climate emergency. Optimization is the logical way to address both these challenges. By working with Fujitsu’s quantum-inspired optimization services, we are delighted about the new capabilities to deliver greater capacity for our supply chain partners as well as lowering CO2 emissions.”

HPA traffic optimization is calculated by the Fujitsu Digital Annealer.2 The Graz University of Technology with its research focus on traffic planning has provided comprehensive support to all stakeholders throughout the process.

Dr. Joseph Reger, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Central & Eastern Europe at Fujitsu, comments: “Finding and delivering sustainable solutions for business and society is at the core of Fujitsu’s Purpose. Working with HPA, we have demonstrated the possibility and wider potential of applying quantum algorithms to the logistics industry. The business and environmental benefits we are developing with HPA show that Fujitsu’s quantum-inspired optimization services deliver results today – years, perhaps even a decade, ahead of the timetable for commercially usable quantum computers. These are improvements available today right across the Mobility sector – not just in maritime logistics.”

Notes to editors

1 Fujitsu’s Digital Annealer is a computing architecture inspired by quantum phenomena, offering users the ability to rapidly solve complex combinatorial optimization problems at speeds significantly faster than general-purpose computers without the inherited complications typically associated with quantum computers.

2 Calculation sufficed real-time requirements. Optimization is done globally for the whole grid, not parallelizable on classical hardware but well suited for Digital Annealer. Network optimization in less than 10 seconds. Approach scalable for metropole network with hundreds of light-controlled intersections. Follow this link for more technical details.

Online resources

About Fujitsu

Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company offering a full range of technology products, solutions and services. Approximately 126,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE:6702) reported consolidated revenues of 3.6 trillion yen (US$34 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2021. For more information, please see

Fujitsu’s Commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by the United Nations in 2015 represent a set of common goals to be achieved worldwide by 2030. Fujitsu’s purpose – “to make the world more sustainable by building trust in society through innovation” – is a promise to contribute to the vision of a better future empowered by the SDGs.

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Date: December 08, 2021
City: Munich