The Euromax Terminal is situated at the north-westerly corner of the Maasvlakte, just around the corner from the entrance to the Rotterdam port. From the North Sea, container vessels can be moored at the new container terminal in no time at all and shipping traffic is not hampered by any restrictions whatsoever. With its depth of 16.65 metres, the Yangtzehaven can easily accommodate even the largest fully laden container vessels. And should much larger container vessels be taken into commission in the future: the quay walls of the Euromax Terminal, which go 34 metres into the ground and are 1.20 metres wide, have been designed with a further deepening of the port to 19.65 metres in mind.
Container vessels are handled at the Euromax Terminal using the largest quay cranes in the world. With their semiautomatic operating system, second cat and other innovations, these cranes are truly one of a kind. They were designed to realise a production that is as high as possible (see section “Quay cranes of the future”). Behind the cranes, unmanned Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) move the containers to and from the stack. Here, speed also comes first. In comparison to previous generations, the speed of the new AGVs has doubled: from three metres to six metres per second.
In addition, they are suitable for twin-carrying (two 20-foot boxes at the same time). Because the AGVs at the Euromax Terminal pass behind the crane, the vehicles are always able to take the shortest route to the stack. This constitutes an important improvement over the ECT Delta Terminal. There, the AGVs go underneath the crane, which creates a sort of tunnel effect; only after having passed the last vessel-handling crane can the AGV turn towards the stack. Another improvement at the Euromax is that behind each crane, there are four lanes for AGVs (as opposed to one at the Delta). This prevents unforeseen situations in which a quay crane needs to wait for the next AGV. Also of remark is the fully automatic refuelling of AGVs at the Euromax Terminal. The moment the fuel level of an AGV drops below a certain level, the terminal system issues the order to drive to an automated filling station.