Archives for June 1, 2021

Associated British Ports to optimize Vehicle Terminal Management with INFORM

Mostly Minis. Visit of International Trade Minister Greg Hands MP to open a vehicle export terminal, Eastern Docks, Port of Southampton. Picture: Chris Moorhouse Thursday 2nd November 2017 Pacific Vehicle Export Terminal Minis and JLR Nov 2017

Associated British Ports (ABP) has chosen internationally active optimization specialist INFORM to provide a scalable terminal operating system solution. With the aim of transforming ABP into the one-stop store for the vehicle’s journey from manufacturer to destination, the collaboration kicks off at the Port of Southampton.

Among ABP’s 21 ports, Southampton stands out as the UK’s number one vehicle handling port, handling around 900,000 vehicles per year. Serving the company’s mission to “Keep Britain Trading”, the project’s goal is to provide a streamlined, fully integrated, terminal operating vehicle management system which covers all port side operations in a single application, including the planning and optimization of compound, resource, work, and damage management. In addition to ensuring holistic transparency within the company, the integration of other stakeholders and optimized planning will also play an important role in reducing costs and improving efficiency in overall operations.
Brian Steeds, ABP Head of Automotive, added: “ABP is investing in a range of digitalization upgrades to enhance its automotive offer. The new Automotive Terminal Operating System in Southampton will bring a wealth of benefits to our customers by enabling efficient compound management, inventory linking and additional services with real time data visibility for customers via a dedicated customer portal.”
With the new system in place, information about the condition, location, destination, and other modalities of each vehicle will be available at all times and easily documented by multiple teams. For this purpose, the new software will be linked with brand new 5G compatible hand-held devices for vehicle data capture utilizing ABP’s new 5G infrastructure that will be in place prior to Inform Go Live. The IT systems of customers and partners, such as customs systems to enable digital inventory linking, can be fully integrated into INFORM’s cloud solution, providing an improved customer experience. In addition, algorithms will provide ABP with real-time decision-making support in optimal planning and efficient allocation of resources, such as parking areas or stevedores. Above that, a comprehensive, flexible vehicle loading and unloading plan, that can quickly adapt to unforeseen vehicle availability issues, can be created automatically.
Designed as a scalable solution which can be extended to enable the capacity to manage an increased number of vehicles, in the future, INFORM’s Vehicle Logistics system can be used as a basis for increasing ABP’s added value towards its customers who rent space for vehicle yards from ABP. “For example, many of our customers around the world deploy our system to also optimize workshop and transportation processes,” said Hartmut Haubrich, Director Vehicle Logistics Systems at INFORM. “We look forward to working with ABP and driving the digitalization of their terminal processes.”
Alastair Welch, ABP Regional Director at the Port of Southampton, commented: “The Port of Southampton is the UK’s number one port for vehicle handling and offers excellent access to the global marketplace. In addition, from this summer, Southampton will become Britain’s first port to implement a private 5G network, which will bring a range of benefits to ABP customers.
“Southampton is an important hub for the automotive industry and plays a key role in supporting sustainable supply chains. With this latest investment, we hope to optimize the services we provide and progress on our journey to transform Southampton into a smart port of the future.” ABP opted for INFORM after being able to conduct a virtual reference visit to National Vehicle Distribution (NVD), the Irish leader in new vehicle logistics, which has been using the system for several years.
Brian Steeds, ABP Head of Automotive, added: “ABP selected INFORM as our partner because of their expertise in building state-of-the-art software solutions and we look forward to working together to deliver this exciting project.”

Future of the tidal Thames: Have your say

Engagement launched targeting a zero-emissions port and river in a vibrant Net Zero economy

The Port of London Authority (PLA) is inviting anyone with an interest in the tidal Thames to get involved and help shape Thames Vision 2050, an updated framework for development of the 95 miles of river from Teddington Lock to the North Sea.

The Thames is home to the UK’s biggest port, busiest inland waterway and a blue/green corridor through the heart of London for wildlife, sport, recreation and culture. The original Thames Vision was developed by the PLA and stakeholders through 2015 covering 20 years out to 2035. Now, with the economic, environmental and social landscape transforming, the Vision is having its first update with a drive towards a vibrant Net Zero economy.

PLA chief executive, Robin Mortimer, explained:

“Thames Vison 2035 was published in summer 2016. Since then we have seen great progress in many areas of river use. The last five years have also been a time of transformation with greater urgency in our response to climate change, Brexit resetting the UK’s trading relationship with the rest of the world and the COVID-19 pandemic causing an unprecedented social and economic shock, potentially accelerating change across our cities and the way we live our lives.

“With a ‘new normal’ now hopefully in sight, the time is right to review progress and look again to ensure the Thames is ready to play a full role in the recovery and transition towards a Net Zero economy.

“The original Vision was the first strategy for the tidal Thames, developed with stakeholders and taking the broadest view of the river across trade, travel, sport, environment and culture. Now we are asking people to work with us again to shape a new Vision out to 2050.”

In shaping the consultation, the PLA convened an expert panel of representatives from Harvard University, Exeter University, Resilience Shift, Lloyd’s Register and The Business of Cities to discuss the major drivers set to influence the development of the Thames between now and 2050. Early input from the expert panel focussed on sustainable development goals including: social (equitable access to employment and wider opportunities), environmental (emissions reduction and climate resilience, water quality and biodiversity) and economic (wealth and job creation, including recovery from the impact of the COVID pandemic).

The initial six-week engagement on Thames Vision 2050 launches today (Tuesday, 1 June), with a simple, four-question online survey available to complete at:

To understand how operations on the Thames will evolve between now and 2050, the PLA commissioned Oxford Economics to complete a Port Trade Forecast. Drawing on input from a wide range of Thames operators, it sets out several forecast scenarios, with outlooks for 2050 port trade ranging from 54 million tonnes and 92 million tonnes.

Further evidence being collated includes a Royal HaskoningDHV study to model the future of energy demand and supply on the tidal Thames, so that vessels calling in the port, or operating on the river have access to the fueling infrastructure that they need. A sports participation study is also underway, which will inform development of the Active Thames programme to increase participation in watersport, the workforce that supports it and make the most of existing assets including clubhouses and the Thames Path National Trail.

“The Thames is the reason why London was established where it is and every generation rethinks the use of this shared space connecting our capital to the rest of the world,” concluded Robin Mortimer. “Because of that, partnership working is key to making things happen and making best use of the river in the decades ahead.”

Through the six weeks a series of three engagement events will be held:

Tuesday 22 June, 6.00 pm, IET London and online
Vision update and discussion – in-person event, streamed online too.
Tuesday 29 June, 2.00 pm, online
Online debate with expert panel members on the global factors set to influence the future of the tidal Thames.
Tuesday 6 July, 4.30 pm to 6.30 pm, London Rowing Club
Drop-in session at London Rowing Club, Putney
You can register for these events via the webpage:

The initial stakeholder engagement around the development of Thames Vision 2050 will close at midday on Wednesday, 14 July 2021.

UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency joins Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping as Knowledge Partner

Today, the UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency and Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping signed a Partnership Agreement as a formal recognition of their joint working. It means the UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency becomes an official partner to the Center, committing to a long-term strategic collaboration about the development of zero carbon solutions for the maritime industry.

The two organizations will share their respective expertise as they work to accelerate the development and implementation of the future fuels and solutions needed to decarbonize shipping.
As part of this effort, the two partners have committed to extensive knowledge sharing within research and development. This will involve joint activities on an industry transition strategy including an action plan for the development of regulation and policies enabling the maritime industry to meet the target of decarbonization by 2050.

The MCA will also be involved in the further development of techno-economic modelling, enabling the comparison of future fuels across segments and geography.

In welcoming the MCA to the Center, CEO Bo Cerup-Simonsen (pictured) says: “Public private partnerships are a central part of a successful journey towards zero carbon shipping in 2050. The collaboration with MCA is an excellent example of a highly complementary partnership that will strengthen our ability to create a sustainable transition strategy and influence the enabling regulatory framework. We look forward to the collaboration.”

Brian Johnson, CEO of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency said: “At the heart of the partnership lies a common vision and that vision is about creating a sustainable way to make zero carbon shipping the future of maritime.”

With 70.000 ships consuming m300Tons fuel p.a. global shipping accounts for around 3% of global carbon emissions, a share that is likely to increase as other industries tackle climate emissions in the coming decades. Achieving the long-term target of decarbonization requires new fuel types and a systemic change within the industry. Shipping is a globally regulated industry, which provides an opportunity to secure broad-based industry adoption of new technology and fuels. To accelerate the development of viable technologies a coordinated effort within applied research is needed across the entire supply chain. Industry leaders play a critical role in ensuring that laboratory research is successfully matured to scalable solutions matching the needs of industry. At the same time, new legislation will be required to enable the transition towards decarbonization.


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