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Automation’s Next Step

This edition of The Journal considers automation of container terminals and how the industry is delivering the next steps towards full and semi-automation.

With the inclusion of 28 brand new technical papers The Journal also explores terminal planning in the age of automation, environmental sustainability for ports, the impact of mega ships and other topics.

Automation continues to drive innovation across several industries, and there is no greater example of this than maritime.

However, implementation, technology and best practices continue to be a constant source of debate and analysis across the sector, as is shown in this edition of the PTI Journal.

The automation debate is not new, but it remains a booming market and a source of growth for the wider container terminal industry.

One thing is for certain, automation is here to stay.

Papers in this edition:


Climate Adaptation Tool for Ports

Guidance has been prepared by international experts on PIANC’s Working Group 178 which has focused on planning for climate change adaptation in operational seaports, inland waterways and navigation infrastructure.

Towards Digital Maturity

The digital ideas and visions are not new. New is their level of maturity. There has been an overwhelming amount of technology hype, but also a growing understanding that digitization will play a critical role in the logistics and terminal industry.

Long Beach Container Terminal Raises the Bar

The recent realignment across all sectors of the supply chain that was set in motion by the wave of consolidation in the shipping line industry has for the most part stabilised.

Terminal Automation Foreseen

With automation being broadly implemented, this article provides a foreseen perspective about some of the key technology components the marketplace offers to terminal operators - for deploying and optimising the automation (still) 'black box' solution.

How Mega-Ships are Affecting Terminals

“Mega Ship” is a terminology coined sometime around 2013 when Maersk line introduces the Triple E series of ships that can carry 18,340 TEUs. The term “Mega Ships” has since been used synonymously with the term “Ultra Large Container Vessel”.

Simulators Support Safe Port Navigation

Ship simulators have become much more realistic, accurate and quick over the last three decades, underpinned by the steady growth in the processing power of computers.

Blockchain and the Supply Chain

There have been innovations in each and every part of supply chain which has led to complexity and difficulty in tracking of products.

Planning for Autonomous Vehicles

The opportunities and challenges of autonomous vehicles in passenger and freight traffic have become a major issue in the discussions about future transport systems.

Are Freeports the Way Forward?

The government aims to create up to ten Freeports across the UK and is now consulting on the form which these should take.

How Port Automation Can Fail

The transition to automation has been a steep learning curve and port operators, analysts and executives have begun to understand the realities and challenges of automation far better.

30 Years of Port Robotics

Improvements in equipment reliability and new technologies are persuading terminal operators from all regions of the world to invest in automation.

“Screwed”: The Real Value of Data

Data is the digital screw, figuratively speaking. Data has moved from being a simple by-product of the application of technology to becoming its focus.

AI: New Era of Automation

Examples of automation are all around us alleviating the mundane, elevating levels of safety and freeing up precious time on a daily basis.

Data and AI Drive Electrification at Container Terminals

There being no shortage of articles written on the subject of AI in general, in the following we will simply shed some light on how this technology can be used in terminal operations for improved ecoefficiency and productivity.



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