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Smart Digital Ports

This edition of the Journal of Ports & Terminals acts as a precursor to the Smart Digital Ports of the Future Conference in Rotterdam from the 4-6 of November. The edition features the world-leading smart ports offering an insight into their operations, globally renowned supply chain academics writing on core smart port and supply chain issues, and a host of pioneering solution providers articulating their vision for the future of ports.

Papers in this edition:

Transforming Terminals in the Mega-Age

The mega-sizing of the shipping industry, with larger ships, hub port strategies, consolidations and new alliances, drives container terminals to transform their operations to stay relevant. Furthermore, the cascading brings the mega-age effect to terminals of all types and sizes, to greenfield and existing facilities alike

The Next-Gen Port Crane Network: Operating Remotely

More than 70% of the globally traded piece goods are currently transported in ISO containers by ship, rail, and truck. Centers for efficient cargo handling are container terminals, which are present in every major port.

Value Creating Smart Ports: Exemplary Examples from Asia

Digitalization, innovation, technology – these are the buzzwords of the decade. This is because in a competitive and dynamic market, seaports must embrace digitalization, innovation, and technology in order to become smarter entities, that is, they must strive to be ‘smart ports’.

Testing the Ability of 5G to Reduce Complexity

The 5G Vertical Integrated Industry for Massive Automation (5G VIIMA) is a research project between Kalmar and Nokia which represents one of the first real-world applications of time-critical 5G applications in terminal automation.

Security for Ports of the Future

Shipping is one of the biggest transport means moving about 80%-90% of the world trade and that has experienced an increased demand from supply chain actors.

Mitigating Exposure to Volatile Compounds

To protect transported freight and inhibit the spread of foreign species, containers are always fumigated with chemicals and many of these are also dangerous to humans.

Reducing Cost and Maximising Safety: The Maritime Doman Awareness Information System

AIS message transmissions number in the tens of millions every single day. The Internet of Things, radar and vessel monitoring systems have hugely increased the amount of data to be processed, stored, analysed and distributed, but a secure cloud-based or hosted infrastructure can reduce the cost, commercial and operational load while increasing the value to the mariner.

Towards the Zero Emission Port

Over the last decade, the European Commission has stressed the urgent need to decarbonise the transport sector and improve environmental performance in the fight against climate change

Smart Ships & Smart Navigation

Smart ports, like smart cities, will use a wide range of technologies, using data driven and automated devices connected together within an “internet of things”. New data collection and analytical technologies and techniques can supply information for safer and more efficient management of resources.

The Future of Autonomous Horizontal Transport

AHTs’ will create new age of fast, inexpensive and convenient transportation, with impacts reverberating far beyond the confines of the trucking industry. Efficiency. Technological prowess. Safety concerns. Public policy catch-up efforts, new jobs created, old jobs destroyed.


Like other high-throughput industries seeking to support exponential growth and increased profit, the international container shipping and intermodal industry is examining every component of the supply chain in order to make more of the handling and transportation processes quicker, cheaper, more data-centric

Increased Security and Operational Performance of Electrified RTGs

In a typical container port yard, containers are moved and stacked by rubber-tired gantry cranes (RTGs). This type of crane is not rail-guided, which means it can move from one aisle to another. With a “hybrid” electrified E-RTG, a battery array supplies the energy required for any movement of the RTG.

3D Printing: Disruptive Technology & Logistics

The days of conventional machining by means of dies, presses and hammers appear to be numbered with computer aided design (CAD) software, materials science and other technologies that 3D printing relies on becoming more advanced in recent years.

Self-Thinking Supply Chains: The Role of Ports

Many supply chains are now quicker and nimbler than ever before. Technology is truly transforming supply chain capabilities. What we have labelled the ‘self-thinking supply chain’ is helping companies as diverse as Amazon and Zume Pizza to engage in ‘anticipatory shipping’ where product is moved closer to likely customer demand.

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