New ‘State of the Industry’ forum brings leading equipment companies together



Rachael White, Secretary General, Port Equipment Manufacturers Association, London, UK.


Founded in late 2004, the mission of the Port Equipment Manufacturers Association (PEMA) is to provide a forum and public voice for the global port equipment and technology sectors. The Association has seen strong growth in the last few years and now has more than 45 member companies, including crane, equipment and component manufacturers, systems and software providers, consultants and other experts.

From its inception, a core part of PEMA’s mandate has been to advance knowledge and best practice in the design and application of equipment and technology, which play such a critical role in meeting today’s demands for productive, efficient, safe and sustainable ports. The pace of change and innovation within our industry continues to accelerate, and exciting new technologies are being introduced at terminals around the globe as a result of continued R&D efforts by the commercial sector.

PEMA is therefore very pleased to host a new ‘State of the Industry’ forum at this year’s TOC Europe event in Antwerp, where representatives from member companies and their clients will discuss current developments in business process and terminal automation technology and what to expect in the near future.

Taking place on the afternoon of June 7th, the forum dispenses with traditional presentations in favor of a live interview and debate format, where a series of panels will be quizzed on five key themes: crane automation; horizontal transport; data capture and telemetrics; software applications; and complex IT integration. We hope this new format will lead to active debate and some lively discussion, and allow many points of view to be aired in a short space of time.

The adoption of automated stacking cranes (ASCs) in container yards continues to gather speed, with a significant number of new projects now in planning worldwide. A selection of key equipment manufacturers and automation system providers will discuss what’s driving yard automation growth, where the technology is headed and debate prospects for quayside crane automation.

Compared with the yard, automation of horizontal quay-yard transport has yet to reach the same level of adoption, but as global trade returns to pre-recession levels and vessel size continues to increase, the speed and efficiency of vessel-stack transfers will be increasingly critical to overall terminal performance. A second forum session brings together three experts to focus on horizontal transport options, with debate on the comparative outlook for AGVs, shuttle carriers, cassettes and other innovative approaches against traditional truck-chassis systems.

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