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Smart Port Technology Prevails

PTI Edition 104 •

Smart technologies, including wireless connectivity, artificial intelligence, automation and digitalisation in general have been hailed as strong solutions to some of the biggest issues of 2020 brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the pandemic interrupted supply chain flows and forced many to switch to remote working it was these smart solutions that came to the forefront as the answer to minimising disruption.

For those who have not already implemented automation the benefits of such a technology is now abundantly clear and many in the industry have commented that there is a strong shift in the demand for such solutions.

Speaking ahead of PTI’s Container Terminal Automation Conference (CTAC) in December 2020, Sun Fei, Automation Architect, ZPMC, said the pandemic had made the industry “better understand” the value of new technologies and that automated terminals had demonstrated their resiliency during 2020.
During CTAC Fei commented that ZPMC has seen its domestic orderbook double as Chinese ports step up their own automation projects amid rising confidence that the worst of the pandemic is over.

Through this final edition of the Journal for 2020 we explore optimising automated equipment fleets as Kalmar discusses how terminals adapt to a changing business landscape.

With all this automation being implemented we also consider how there will emerge a need for an intelligent centralised system to run and manage the daily operations across various port facilities.

PTI has also received an exclusive article from various authors, including those from the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE), Hamburg Port Authority, Hapag-Lloyd and Kuhne+Nagel, about the concept of ‘lighthouse ports’ being digital pioneers and how they will now act as nodes of supply chain networks.
Our PortEconomics partners explain what has been happening regarding throughput at ports throughout the globe during 2020 with an overview and analysis of TEU volumes through the first nine months of what has been a challenging year for many.

Finally, Navis provides insight into why now is the perfect time for terminals to embrace software as a service (SaaS)-based terminal operating systems. The tide is changing and momentum is building for widespread adoption of the SaaS model.

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