Konecranes unveils ARTGs in Rotterdam

The technical features of the new system come with several positive points including higher productivity, operational savings and safety

September 2013

Konecranes recently introduced in the container-handling industry its automated rubber tyred gantry (ARTG) system which the company says provides RTG terminal operators with all the benefits of automation: operational cost savings, greater productivity, increased predictability and increased safety.

The unveiling was done in Rotterdam, Holland, at the TOC (Transport Operators Conference) and Container Supply Chain exhibition and conference in late June.

The Konecranes ARTG system is built around Konecranes’ market-leading 16-wheel RTG, which has a unique ability to tolerate rough yard surfaces. The system includes a complete package of truck guidance infrastructure, a Remote Operating Station with a specially developed Graphical User Interface (GUI), and an IT system that interfaces with the customer’s Terminal Operating System (TOS).

With its new ARTG system Konecranes has solved the problems that have been preventing the adoption of automated RTG operation. The Konecranes ARTG crane can handle a wide range of yard surface variations. The company’s ARTG system can handle a multi-dimensional complexity of truck traffic, which flows along the container stacks in an automated operating model.

The system is built around the Konecranes 16-wheel RTG, which is ideally suited to automation. The holistic combination of its intelligent steel structure and Active Load Control system copes with the wide range of surface variations inherent in RTG container yards, and with the variations inherent when a crane of this size runs freely on rubber tyres. Customers can start with their current yard infrastructure as they move to automated RTG operation.

On the process side, Konecranes offers a model for handling truck traffic that includes special safety infrastructure and intelligent stack gates. This model is the foundation for designing customer-specific operating models.

In other Konecranes news, the company received an order worth $56 million from the Port of Houston Authority (PHA) in the US. The order includes four Super Post Panamax STS (ship-to-shore) cranes and three RTG cranes. These will be the biggest Konecranes STS cranes ever built.  The STS cranes will be shipped to PHA’s Barbours Cut Terminal in late 2014 and supplied during the first quarter of 2015, while the RTGs will be delivered to Bayport Terminal in spring 2014.

The Port of Houston Authority is the largest container port in the Gulf of Mexico. It is responsible for eight cargo terminals and one cruise terminal along the Houston Ship Channel and handles millions of tonnes of cargo a year. Konecranes delivered its first RTGs to PHA in 2003 and at present PHA has 49 Konecranes RTGs in its fleet.

Konecranes received a further order from Brazilian shipyard Estaleiro Enseada do Paraguaçu – EEP. The high-tech portal jib crane is scheduled to be taken into operation in August 2014. The order follows up the Konecranes Goliath gantry crane that the same customer ordered in March 2013. The parties have agreed not to disclose the value of the order, but the price for this type of crane typically is in the range of $6-8 million, depending on the exact scope of delivery.

The crane will be equipped with the latest in crane technology. With a lifting capacity of 70 tonnes, a lifting height of 55 m and a reach of 80 m with high speed movement, the portal jib crane will be an effective partner to the gantry crane, which is meant for heavy duty lifting, in the material flow at the shipyard.

“Delivery of the Goliath gantry crane ordered previously is going ahead at full speed and the new order will give clear synergies both for our customer and us, for example in project management, supply chain and timing,” says Jussi Rautiainen, general manager, shipyard cranes. “The most valuable aspect will, however, be the operational synergies from the cranes, for example the same basic technology easing operator work, common spare parts and service. These all mean increased safety and productivity, which the client will benefit from throughout the life of the cranes.”

Konecranes received an order for four rail mounted gantry (RMG) cranes from Pacific National (PN), Australia’s largest private rail freight operator. The investment in these cranes is part of larger modernisation projects in PN’s terminals in Sydney and Melbourne. The cranes will be delivered during 2014 and 2015, two of them to Sydney Freight Terminal (SFT) and two to Melbourne Freight Terminal (MFT). The parties have agreed not to disclose the value of the order.

Pacific National is fully owned by the Australian Stock Exchange listed entity Asciano and operates a rail freight network between key cities in Australia. During the last three years Konecranes has handled repair and maintenance of PN’s current cranes at MFT and SFT, the efficiency and reliability of which have significantly increased during this time.

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