Updates and announcements from land, sea and air – warehousing & logistics, aviation, maritime, storage, transportation and more

Power in port
ABB has secured the contract covering South Korea’s commitment to sustainable shore-to-ship power, after a pilot scheme for passenger ships to plug into the local grid received the go ahead from Incheon Port Authority (IPA).

In addition to a new $160 million ferry terminal opened in April 2019, Port of Incheon inaugurated South Korea’s largest cruise terminal in June 2019. Given its metropolitan location and IPA’s ambitions to develop its ‘Golden Harbor’ vision for Incheon as a new tourism hub for the Northeast Asia, environmental credentials rank highly in port priorities.

“As the first agreement covering shore-to-ship power in South Korea, this is a truly significant breakthrough for ABB,” said Juha Koskela, Managing Director, ABB Marine & Ports. “We are honoured to be selected by IPA to support their efforts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions from ships, as well as moving towards increasingly sustainable port operations.”

ABB’s full scope of delivery includes the installation of an onshore power connection at the Incheon passenger terminal consisting of an enclosure featuring a 2000 kVA capacity Static Frequency Convertor with 50/60HZ output, a transformer, a Neutral Grounding Registor Unit and an outdoor enclosure.

Simulating success
The technology group Wärtsilä has supplied advanced technology simulators providing realistic hands-on training at a new facility in Portugal. The training centre is developed and run by the Port Authority for the ports of Douro, Leixōes and Vano do Castelo (APDL), and was inaugurated at the end of July.

The centre is the country’s largest and most advanced maritime training facility. It features a Wärtsilä Full Mission Bridge (FMB) simulator with 360-degree projection, two tug simulators with 360-degree LCD, and one VTS simulator to allow full training, complex exercises, and certification for pilots, tug masters, merchant navy offices, and seafaring vessel crews. The simulation technology has been developed by Transas, a Wärtsilä company.

“The Full Mission Bridge simulator with 360-degree projection technology is the largest and most modern of its kind in Portugal. Without a doubt, it is also on a par other state-of-the-art simulation solutions provided to well-known European training centres since it implements the most realistic simulation possible,” Alex van Knotsenborg, Global Sales Director, Wärtsilä Transas pointed out.


New pier for London
The highly-anticipated Royal Wharf Pier arrived in London on 18th September in impressive fashion, as the canting brow, carried on a 65m x 60m boat and the pontoon, brought in by the Mts Viscount tug, was transported along the River Thames to the shores of the landmark Royal Wharf development.

Constructed offsite in Holland, the new pier travelled over 300 miles across the North Sea to reach its new home in London, where it will become London’s longest pier and the latest stop on the Thames Clippers service.

Developed by Ballymore & Oxley and designed by Nex-, the pier will also provide a large public space for Londoners, including a 162m2 viewing platform and 65m walkway. The pier will provide locals, tourists and commuters with an alternative way to get in and out of central London, as the capital looks to diversify its transport infrastructure. According to the latest phase of the University of Greenwich wellness research conducted in June 2019, Londoners who commute by boat are still the happiest and most relaxed commuters.

Airport acquisition
Ancala Partners LLP (Ancala), the independent infrastructure investment manager, has completed the acquisition of a 45 per cent interest in Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) for an undisclosed sum on behalf of its funds.

Ancala has purchased 35 per cent of the airport from Peel Group (Peel), one of the UK’s leading private real estate investment and infrastructure companies, and ten per cent from Liverpool City Council (LCC). Peel and LCC retain 45 per cent and ten per cent interests respectively.

Spence Clunie, Senior Partner, Ancala, commented: “Transport infrastructure is a highly promising segment of the market, so we are delighted to be acquiring a stake on behalf of our investors in such a prestigious regional airport. LJLA has already seen substantial growth in recent years and we see strong prospects for this continuing.”

“The successful track record we share with Ancala was a key factor in selecting them as our partner for LJLA,” added Steven Underwood, Chief Executive, The Peel Group.

New canine recruits
CHC Group welcomed two four-legged visitors to its Aberdeen operation after raising more than £40,000 to sponsor a puppy for the Veterans With Dogs charity. Labradors Copter and Ellie are currently in the process of a 12-month initial training period before eventually becoming assistance dogs to military veterans suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or another mental health condition. The specially trained dogs help the veterans lead more independent lives and help mitigate the debilitating effects of mental health difficulties.

Copter and Ellie met CHC’s Europe, Middle East and Africa Regional Director Mark Abbey, at CHC’s operations headquarters at Aberdeen Airport. Mark commented: “Copter and Ellie are progressing well through their training programmes which will eventually see them provide support to veterans who can benefit hugely from having a canine companion to care for. The support they provide to those armed forces personnel who have given so much for their country is tremendous. We employ several ex-services personnel and there are strong links between the military and commercial aviation sectors, particularly within our flying and engineering teams.”

Snow patrol
Semcon is developing an autonomous tractor to keep runway edge lights clear of snow as part of a research project investigating new airport maintenance technology. AVAP (Autonomous Vehicles for AirPorts) is a unique collaboration project that aims to demonstrate how vehicle automation can safely help to reduce costs and make airport operation more efficient. The technology has now been tested for the first time at Örnsköldsvik Airport.

The tractor used for the snow clearing project is a Lundberg 6250. Besides sensors for scanning the environment, it has been fitted with a computer for intelligent control and management of the commands sent to it. This tractor is given a ploughing task by an operator via 4G and then calculates how to complete the task, constantly communicating its position and status. Air traffic controllers can also monitor and communicate with the vehicle. The control system used was developed by Yeti Snow Technology, co-owned by Semcon, Husqvarna Group and Øveraasen, and is currently undergoing testing as part of projects involving autonomous snowploughs at an airport for Norwegian airport operator Avinor.

Under control
Transport for London (TfL) has awarded a contract to Sopra Steria, a leading information technology company, to develop new software which will help TfL to tackle some of the biggest issues facing the capital, such as congestion and road danger.

TfL will work closely with Sopra Steria to develop a new control centre system, which will give everybody managing the road network a single, unified view of everything happening on the network, including up-to-the minute details of all known incidents and the actions being taken.

The ground-breaking software will also be able to analyse multiple sources of information to generate rapid incident alerts for TfL staff, ensuring that vital information on incidents is quickly delivered to those who need it most, such as local councils, the emergency services and other organisations, as well as TfL’s customers and companies providing routing advice to road users.

The new software, which will be owned by TfL and developed jointly with Sopra Steria, will enable TfL and other organisations to detect and respond to incidents more quickly and efficiently, reducing the road danger they can cause and helping to minimise their impact on congestion.