Automated Mooring For Stabilizing Megaships



Mike Howie, Global MoorMaster System Specialist, Cavotec, UK


As the number of large and super-large container vessels in service grows, port authorities are scrambling to service these vast ships in ways that are safer and more profitable. Wider application of automated technologies is increasingly being applied to mooring – an area that has remained unchanged for thousands of years.

Ports that have introduced automated mooring are realising considerable operational and safety benefits. Automated mooring technology MoorMaster is being used in new applications helping container ports to optimise the management of mega-container vessels. Every year, ship and shore-side personnel sustain severe injuries, some of which are fatal, during conventional mooring operations.

With conventional mooring, the larger the vessel, the larger the number of mooring lines required to hold the vessel in position. The more lines you have, the greater the risk of serious injury to personnel, and the greater the risk of damage to equipment.

Using the technology can reduce the risk of mooring accidents as personnel are removed from hazardous working areas, and mooring lines are removed from the mooring process altogether. Vacuum-based automated mooring technology replaces the conventional mooring lines. Remote-controlled vacuum pads recessed in, or mounted on the quayside or pontoons, moor and release vessels within 30 seconds. To date, the technology has performed more than 310,000 mooring operations at applications worldwide including the ports of Beirut, Salalah and Ngqura. 

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