Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co. Ltd. (ZPMC) has provided APM Terminals (APMT) Aarhus with two extra automated straddle carriers as part of a first-of-its-kind trial project in a real terminal setting.
The two companies will join forces with the initial prototype, which was already introduced in the beginning of 2022.
Mikael Gutman, Nordic Managing Director in APMT, said: “We are proud to be part of the development of these highly-advanced GPS operated automated straddle carriers.
“We have been testing the first straddle carrier in a small, enclosed area which has provided valuable learnings and insights for the development of the next models.
“With the new Blue Bots, we are now ready to expand our test area to 65,000 square metres in order to further analyse and optimise the technology to fit our operation and enhance safety.”
The two automated straddle carriers, nicknamed Blue Bots, are part of ZPMC’s automated straddle carrier programme and have been specifically built for APM Terminals Aarhus based on learnings from the yard.
At the terminals, the first Blue Bot has already been undergoing tests on new capabilities, such as navigation in the reefer area and picking and placing containers to and from a test quay crane lane.
The Blue Bot has reportedly completed more than 6,000 lifts and navigating some 800 kilometres within the testing area without interfering with daily operations.
The new straddle carriers can seemingly operate automatically at low temperatures, meeting the needs of terminal automation.
APMT said they have been further optimised and equipped with hybrid diesel generators and lithium battery to meet the demand for intelligent environmental protection.