Hutchison Ports’ Port of Felixstowe has taken delivery of its first remote-controlled RTGs
The four electric-powered cranes were built by ZPMC in Shanghai and are the first of eight similar machines to be delivered over the next few weeks. The port also has two remote controlled ship-to-shore gantry cranes currently undergoing manual testing before being deployed in full remote mode. The RTGs arrived on an AAL heavy lift ship chartered by ZPMC, rather than on one of ZPMC’s own ZHEN HUA crane delivery vessels.
Commenting on the latest equipment, Robert Ashton, Operations Director at the Port of Felixstowe, said: “The new cranes represent an important step towards a greater degree of remote working at the Port of Felixstowe. Remote working will deliver benefits for both our employees and our customers.
“For the drivers, the ergonomics are much better than a traditional operation. The physical stress to a driver’s back, neck and shoulders will be significantly reduced and the vibrations experienced as cranes operate will be eliminated altogether. Operationally, we will be able to deploy equipment more dynamically to meet peaks in demand and locating operators, vessel controllers and supervisors closer to one another will lead to improvements in alignment and communication.”
The new RTGs will serve Berths 8&9 where an additional 18,000 TEU of container storage has been created to meet growing demand at the UK’s leading container port. The new RTGs are electric-powered (off Vahle busbars) and capable of stacking containers 6-high to enable more efficient use to be made of the new yard area. Felixstowe was one of the first ports in the world to use 7 + 1 RTGs.