The Port of Felixstowe has ordered eight automated rubber-tyred gantry (ARMG) cranes, which will come into commercial operation during the first quarter of 2019.
The electrified units will be manufactured by ZPMC with drive, control and automation systems from Siemens.
Simulation, virtual commissioning and remote control operator stations (RCOS) are integral parts of the order, noted the German company.
According to the drive manufacturer, virtual commissioning will ensure a fast go-live at the port, which is the largest in the UK.
Rink Groenveld, head of Siemens Cranes Projecthouse, said: “Using digital twins of the cranes enables various simulations, allowing for flexibility and providing us the ability to test our automation systems against a virtual crane and simulated environment and create all sorts of work-through scenarios.
“Implementation of automation modules allowing for collision prevention and automated stacking, integrated safety solutions and Remote Control will lead to safe, productive and consistent operations in the container terminal.”
The ARTGs purchased will support the additional yard capacity that the port is creating, while it extends berths eight and nine.
The Port of Felixstowe decided to electrify the RTGs in order to reduce its ecological footprint and gradually introduce automation in the yard to improve safety and competitiveness.
The new cranes will be taken in operation on the new blocks under development, which allows the terminal to continue its commercial operations as usual.