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Solvo expands upon TOS features for railway terminals

Solvo expands upon TOS features for railway terminals
Maksim Maksimov outlined the new features at a conference

Solvo has released a new version of its terminal operating software (TOS) for railway terminals which includes features for efficient railway cargo terminal management.

The new features in the Solvo.TOS, which was made available to customers at the end of 2020, include automated addressed railcar allocation and extended terminal rail-track accounting.

Commercial director of TOS systems at Solvo Maksim Maksimov explained the role of the new features at the ‘Perspective for the development of the big port of St. Petersburg’ conference.

Maksimov said: “In the ‘Rail-track network’ module of the system, not only freight, but also non-freight tracks are now distinguished, where it is possible to lay wagons on the sludge and control shunting operations, supply and retrieval of trains, coupling and uncoupling.

“Also, the system allows planning railcar allocation sequence wagon or fitting platform position on tracks. Distances are automatically taken into account by the system during job assignment to CHE operators.”

For example, earlier only the sequence of cars on the track was taken into account, but there was no information about their territorial location, whereas now the system records the location of each car by up to a metre.

The system takes into account the exact geographical location of each railcar at job scheduling or CHE dispatching and the distances between the objects are taken into account when planning loading/discharge operations.

Maksimov added: “Thanks to the Solvo.TOS scheduling algorithms, you know exactly how long it takes for a crane or reachstacker to get there.”

Block train management has also been strengthened with new allocation rules having been added which mean that now, when containers are brought to the terminal for shipment by a block train or received by sea, special Solvo.TOS rules group containers at the warehouse area to be conveniently loaded onto a block train.

The rules for planning and the loading of containers on fitting platforms, taking into account their ‘yellow’ and ‘green’ run, destination stations and so on were added to the TOS system.

“Now users can write their own scripts for automated railcar planning configuration, container selection for loading, taking into account the local technical requirements depending on wagon type and model, passing direction, destination station, FIFO principles and so on,” Maksimov explained.

All the related paperwork can be handled within the Solvo.TOS platform, meaning that the terminal operator does not need to switch from one system to another.

Special user interfaces were also developed for tallymen and equipment operators which allow the use of touchscreen Android tablets to swipe, photograph container defects and seals.

These interfaces can also be used when unloading and filing general cargo in addition to containers.

“We have improved and changed the client’s web portal,” Maksimov noted. “It has become more user-friendly and ergonomic.”

Convenient web interfaces of the system allows the user to control the terminal from home or any other place with internet connection and interfaces for mobile devices are available to monitor the status of ongoing work.