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Moving Crane Operations: Entering the Control Room

Moving crane operations to the control room

Stacking crane operations have been handled from a control room for some time now. As we begin to see ship-to-shore (STS) crane operators moving down from cranes to control rooms, the question arises: what does this mean for container terminals? One way to identify both opportunities and possible pitfalls is to look into what, for instance, process industries have done to improve the ergonomics and thus productivity by developing concepts for control rooms and the primary operator working environment. The recent orders awarded to ABB show that remote control of STS cranes has made its breakthrough on the market. Driven by the need for higher cranes with lifting heights over 50 metres and higher productivity requirements, we expect the demand for this technology to increase.

Benefits of control room operations

Crane operations from the control room improve operators’ working environment and reduce fatigue, stress on the neck and back, and so on. Operators supervise the crane motion via views from on board cameras, which are often more comprehensive than the views available from inside the crane cabin. With no operator on board, the crane can run faster and ramp times can be shorter. This enables shorter cycle times to unload an entire ship of cargo…

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Clara Holmgren, product manager, ABB AB Crane Systems and Lena Nyberg, marketing communications manager, Northern Europe region, ABB AB Control Systems, Västerås, Sweden