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Edition 61

PTI’s first edition of 2014 begins by highlighting how ports are becoming increasingly vulnerable to the modern threat of Cyber Security and, as discussed by IBM, it is an area that is being increasingly overlooked. Elsewhere, we premier the first of our dedicated sections focusing on China’s maritime industry featuring two exclusive articles from the Shanghai Maritime University.

Papers in this edition:


Brake technology in the port sector

In the last decades, advanced brake technology in the port sector follows the global productivity developments of the international maritime trade. Container vessels are getting bigger and bigger and the ship to shore cranes is getting consistently higher. But service, emergency or storm brakes cannot be getting bigger and bigger to meet these increasing demands.

Understanding the economic geography of commodity trade

The nature of commodity trade is such that, on the one hand, it is linked with the financial sector and with production, storage and distribution on the other. However, the role of commodity traders in managing its global supply chains is not clearly understood. Therefore, the aim of this research is to understand the economic geography of commodity trade.

The port system in northern China

The Bohai Sea Economic Rim (BER) in northern China is one of the country's three main areas of concentrated port activity and comprises three multi-port gateway regions and eleven ports. The ports are divided into three groups: large gateway ports, medium-sized ports, and small ports. The average growth rate of cargo handled by the region is among the highest in the world, despite the recent economic slowdown, mainly because the ports handle cargo needed for manufacturing, and also because of the industrial shift toward eastern and northern regions of China.

Dry bulk cargo in Ukrainian ports

The black sea region is an important area of development due to its geographical size and resource base. However, on a global scale, it is quite limited. This contribution zooms in on port activity in Ukraine, specifically focusing on dry bulk cargo such as: grain, iron ore, black metals, and containers.

Pilot free trade zone expands growth

China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (CSPFTZ) has been set up by the Chinese Government on a par with international standards and aims to foster China's competitive edge, accelerate the transformation of government functions, expand the opening-up of the investment sector, advance trade development, bring innovation in financial services, perfect legal protection, thereby bringing opportunities to trade, finance and shipping.

Thermal imaging technology for port security

Port security is anything but typical. From miles of unguarded, unlit perimeters to ever-changing lighting and weather conditions, traditional video security has a difficult time providing the comprehensive intelligence demanded by such a high-security facility. In this article, Pelco's Jeremy Hickman explains how thermal imaging is becoming an increasingly relied upon to address these issues.

Easing into automation

Dr. Oscar Pernia discusses in this article how automation continues to be adopted and embraced throughout the industry and how it is here to stay. He also delves into both terminal automation challenges and solutions and how if these solutions are implemented properly the investment can prove automation to be a worthwhile investment. This comes with the added abilities of being able to provide high quality levels of performance, data accuracy, control, analysis and ultimately, profitability for ports and terminals around the world.

Evolving solutions for ship-to-ship LNG transfer in tandem configuration

FLNG is now technically and economically proven in enabling previously unviable gas fields to be exploited, and while the industry looks to move further offshore, there are lessons to be learned and best practices to be taken from onshore and near shore applications. However, an understanding of the complexities and individual requirements of more extreme offshore environments is key to successful systems development in FLNG docking, mooring and transfer, whether side-by-side or tandem configuration.

Funding and financing marine infrastructure

This article summarises three case studies being undertaken by the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and their findings. The researchers concluded that it would be possible to maintain, improve, and ensure the long-term viability of US inland waterway infrastructure through alternative approaches, but significant changes would be required in regards to policies, funding mechanisms, programs, and procedures related to project planning and implementation.

Dry bulk terminal capacity planning

With the continuous growth in dry cargo shipping, more and more dry bulk export terminals have expansion plans. In this article, Dr Mi-Rong Wu, a consultant at Dutch-based company TBA, discusses the importance of including and quantifying the impact of stochastic effects to identify bottlenecks and maximise the potential of the terminal.

Port system reform in mainland China

Mainland China has experienced a tremendous change in its port administration and management systems, with a simultaneous expansion of both capacity and throughput. A successful series of reforms, which were implemented in three consecutive major stages, provided a solid foundation for the rapid development of ports and shipping in mainland China. Dr. Shou Jianmin from the Shanghai Maritime University discusses how these reforms have paved the way for the success of the Chinese port sector.

Rationalising and revitalising the US maritime industry

International export trade was valued by the World Trade Organization for the US in 2012 at US$3,882.7 billion, of which approximately 95 percent was carried by ships. International trade is the foundation of national security. Hence a vital, strong, modern and competitive merchant marine is essential to international trade and therefore, domestic trade. In this paper, John A C Cartner argues that the US Department of Transportation should take the proper steps required by law to encourage, rationalise and revitalise the US commercial water shipping sector and infrastructure for both the foreign and domestic trades. A complete review of all maritime laws should be undertaken he believes, and Congress should be encouraged to amend or abolish antiquated or ineffective laws to take into account the concepts he outlines here as national policy for the maritime industry.

Threats to Cybersecurity in Ports

Unavailability of a large port could present a major economic incident for a state or country, and could bring 'just in time' supply chains to a grinding halt in a number of days. Due to their interconnections and dependency on information and communications technology (ICT) systems and the internet, ports are increasingly vulnerable to cyber attacks. A solid cyber security plan is a must in any modern port. IBM, the world's leading IT company, ask - How ready are you?

Making port security work

In this paper Henk van Unnik, security expert and former chairman of the Security Development Board at the Port of Rotterdam, outlines the current port security scenario and explains how a solution to the problem has been developed through the Security UPgrade for PORTs (SUPPORT) research and development project which is part-funded by the European Commission’s FP7 Security Research Programme.

Automation for Brownfield Terminals

Automating a greenfield (newly built) terminal from scratch is often what comes to mind when discussing automated terminals. However, existing (brownfield) terminals can be automated partially or wholly to achieve the benefits of automation. In this article Kalmar's director for terminal development and automation, Elmar Hendriks, discusses how these benefits can be achieved.

MV Pile anchors in the Port of Fujairah

In 2010 the Port of Fujairah decided to expand its marine Oil Terminal 2 (OT2) by realising two new berths capable of receiving VLCC size tankers. The facility was to be built as a continuous quay wall in order to allow flexible berth usage. In this article MUC Engineering's Gert-Jan Roelevink discusses why an MV pile anchor was proposed in combination with a rock backfill in the build of the new quay.

Port industry performance management

Port performance management has been a heated topic both in the industry and academia for the past 20 years, albeit on different levels and in a rather scattered way across performance levels – from the individual terminal operational efficiency, to country level data on maritime connectivity, as well as performance areas (operations, socio-economic, environmental, governance). In this paper, Professor Dr. Michaël Dooms looks at the current state of port industry level performance initiatives, whilst highlighting the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Conveying and refining arctic safety

The Central Dredging Association (CEDA) Forum 2013, titled Dredging in a Changing World, focused on two current and prominent issues in the dredging industry. The morning session came under the title ‘working under exotic circumstances’ while the afternoon session was named ‘large marine infrastructure projects and the EU habitats directive: lessons learned’. This article looks at the major issues and key areas of discussion raised at this year's forum.

Tank mixing in terminal operations

The global storage terminals industry faces many challenges, some old, some new; this article will discuss two of them both concerning the merits of mixing in above-ground storage tanks. This article discusses the challenge of handling a variety of different grades of fuel and the necessity to process them into a final specification in the shortest possible time. The other challenge is the necessity to keep tankage free from deposition – basic sediment and water. Failure to handle either of these challenges could spell disaster and huge revenue losses.

Embracing automation

Automation is taking a major leap in many parts of the world. More and more container terminals are adopting automated solutions to meet the challenge of larger ships, taller cranes and bigger call sizes. This evolution changes the role of humans in the container handling process, from ship to gate. In this article ABB's Uno Bryfors discusses how container terminals are becoming factories without roofs and are now embracing automation as the key component in their operational set up.

Sustainability and community involvement in port redevelopment

This article provides some suggestions on how ports might offer a diverse range of activities, change the use of empty or underutilised buildings, integrate community activities and strengthen community ties, and also potentially increase tourism within its area. There is, of course, scope for a range of other possibilities depending on the size, location and business activities of a specific port. There is also, quite clearly, a need to consider port security and protection of key port areas, when developing new activities around the port and its environs.