The Lamong Bay Terminal in Surabaya, Indonesia, which was opened on Friday by the President of Indonesia, will feature a high level of automation.
The state-operated terminal will use equipment from Finnish manufacturer Konecranes, including 20 automated stacking cranes (ASCs), remote operating stations (ROSs) and associated container yard infrastructure, as well as ten ship-to-shore cranes and five straddle carriers.
The terminal will also use fifty automotive terminal lift frailers (ATTs) supplied by French company Gaussin Manugustique.
Tuomas Saastamoinen, Konecranes sales and marketing director of port cranes, contradicted the conventional wisdom that automation is for high labour-cost countries.
He told CM that, his personal opinion was that, in countries where the variance of skills in the labour force is huge, then automation is a good choice.
“On Monday you might have a less skilled operator and then, on Tuesday, a more professional one – that means that operational efficiency is variable”, he said, “It shouldn’t be like that. When the terminal is running, automation means that you are able to predict your productivity levels very accurately.”
Saastamoinen went on to predict that, while automation will grow in popularity in places where it is already popular (USA, China, Japan, Benelux), it will also expand into other areas.
Conventional wisdom is that, as automation lowers labour costs, it is more attractive in countries where the cost of labour is high.
Saastamoinen said this overlooked the role of stability in operations, an increasingly growing concern for terminal operators.
Lamong Bay’s automated container handling system includes Konecranes active load control technology, which is now extended with a machine vision system, which detects containers and container profiles.
As the container approaches, the company said in a statement, the container profile becomes more accurate and the effects of dust and fog are minimised. The system senses neighbouring container stacks from the point of view of the load and performs canyon driving.