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The World`s Most Advanced STS Cranes

APM Terminals Maasvlakte II’s advanced Ship-to-Shore (STS) cranes have been designed and constructed to the highest safety, productivity and automation standards in the industry. Improved technology and larger cranes are now required to accommodate the larger containerships entering into the global containership fleet. At present, the world’s largest operating container ship is the recently delivered 19,224 TEU capacity MSC Oscar, the first of six such vessels ordered. These vessels will replace the 19,100 TEU capacity China Shipping Globe and the Maersk EEE-Class vessels, with a capacity of 18,300 TEUs, as the largest in the global fleet, and more. A total of  20 new EEE Class 18,300 TEU capacity vessels are scheduled to be delivered, with the first, the Maersk McKinney Moller, having entered into service in July 2013; its sister vessels are being added to the fleet at approximately one per month. CGM-CMA is expecting the delivery of six 18,000 TEU capacity vessels in 2015. In March, Mitsui OSK announced orders for six vessels of 20,150 TEU capacity.

Vessels of over 10,000 TEU capacity represent the largest category of new ship orders, with 137 on order; including 34 of 18,000 to 20,000 TEU capacity as of January 2015. Only ports and terminals with sufficient depth (15 meters) and Super-PostPanamax Cranes (22-container reach) can accommodate these new larger vessels. APM Terminals Maasvlakte II Rotterdam is equipped with eight STS cranes which are the world’s first to be operated completely by remote control, with no operator present in the crane’s cab. They are also the world’s tallest STS cranes, capable of working vessels 60 meters wide (a 25-container wide reach) and 24 stories tall.

Operationally, the automated STS cranes move containers between vessels alongside the quay and the fleet of battery-powered Lift-Automated Guided Vehicles (Lift-AGVs) which transport containers between the quay and designated areas in the yard, including dedicated barge and on-dock rail facilities. A fleet of 26 Automated Rail-Mounted Gantry Cranes (ARMGs) positions containers in the yard in a high-density stacking system. A computerized terminal operating system is integrated with the Equipment Control System linking the automated vehicles and cranes to maximize operations and efficiency. Terminal productivity is projected to increase by as much as 40%, as the cranes handle up to 7,000 container moves per vessel call.

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