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FICT live with automated RMGs

Tianjin terminal has successfully converted 31 RMGs to automated cranes.

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Navis has announced that following an extensive automation project, Five Continents International Container Terminal (FICT) in Tianjin, China has successfully automated its 31 rail mounted gantry (ARMG) cranes, which are now live on N4.


Other vendors are involved in the automation project. In 2018 ZPMC announced that it had won the order to automate these cranes, and it later emerged that they would be fitted with crane automation systems from ABB. ZPMC and Navis have several partnership agreements, including one for ZPMC to be a NAVIS’s ‘Organization Services Partner and Development Partner’, with ZPMC staff trained to implement Navis software. FICT was one of two projects where ZPMC personnel shadowed Navis personnel to support this.


“Sitting in one of the busiest ports in the world, FICT handles an extraordinary volume of cargo and we quickly realized the value that modernizing our yard operations would bring to our customers, processing their containers in the most timely and efficient manner possible,” said Song Tianwei, General Manager at FICT. “With the help of leading software and equipment providers, we completed the automation process in record time and expect to see significant gains in efficiency, which in turn will open up our capacity and allow us to serve more customers.”


"The equipment retrofitting process was completed in record time and all 31 automated cranes went live in production as of April 30, 2019," Navis continued. "Navis’ N4 software serves as the brain directing the crane operations, optimizing the sequence of work orders. Among the critical tasks managed by N4 are yard planning, vessel planning, ARMG scheduling and dispatching and prime mover/tractor-trailer scheduling and dispatching. Following the upgrade to the equipment and software, the cranes at FICT now deliver a consistent performance of 30 moves per hour, increasing the terminal’s overall capacity by more than 10%."


“FICT is among the early adopters of technological innovation – converting its manual operations to semi-automated by retrofitting its rail mounted cranes,” said Mark Welles, Vice President and General Manager Asia Pacific, Navis. “Today’s modern terminals must operate at peak productivity and efficiency on a consistent basis. FICT identified an area for improvement and with N4 Expert Decking and Primeroute, we have optimised the stowage of containers in the yard and matched productivity with the increased capacity.”

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