Crane automation

Crane automation from DIS focusses on optimizing discharge and loading cycles by automatically identifying containers, stow positions and providing additional performance and safety indicators to the crane operator.

How it works

The crane is equipped with multiple OCR cameras at strategic locations depending on required system output and type of operations, such as back/front reach, platform/no platform, twin/tandem lift. These cameras can be used for CCTV purposes as well, but for different field of views, additional CCTV cameras may be deployed as well.

For every container that passes by, the cameras capture multiple images from which details like the number, ISO code as well as additional details like Door Direction and hazardous labels are extracted. The output is matched against the discharge/loading list, thereby making it possible to automate the inspection tasks. In case of any mismatch, an exception is raised real-time, via which a central trouble clerk is able to correct or add details. In case any inspection items are left that cannot be automated, like seal number registration, a clerk on the crane will operate a hand held displaying instructions dispatched by our software.

The additional CCTV camera’s will record a video clip from the discharge/load cyclus based on the PLC triggers. The video is made available in the central OCR list along with the captured OCR details and pictures for later safety/claim related referral. 

The OCR and CCTV is integrated as well in the operator cabin, where a performance & safety screen visualizes the items that are difficult to see for the crane operator like the back reach or the sides of the crane legs. As an over layer on the CCTV images, crane performance is displayed like amount of moves last 60 minutes, duration of last cycle, amount of boxes to go in current work queue, expected weight from next container to lift, etc. 

The optional StowCheck feature will detect the actual stow position of each container during discharge and loading. A display of the bays is provided, showing planned versus actual situation, thereby indicating issues detected like incorrect positions. 

Solution benefits

The proposed solution are intended to provide far-reaching benefits to container terminal operators.

Primary benefits include:

  • Improve productivity through the elimination of data input and/or task confirmations thereby increasing the accuracy and velocity of the transactions resulting in higher throughput and improved container inventory accuracy. Operators can introduce error and are potentially prone to data entry errors.
  • Centralized control over exceptions that occur from automatic inspection. Trouble desks can be combined and are equipped with all necessary tools to solve any irregularities in the process as efficient as possible.

Secondary benefits include:

  • Safer operations since no clerks are required below heavy equipment to check transactions because all data capture of transactions is automatic. Next to that will the crane operator have a better view on what is happening below.

Please also refer to our references section for a better impression on earlier deployed Gate automation solutions.

Products part of this solution

The solution compromises of the following. More information on the products part of this integrated solution can be found in the products section.

  • Crane OCR
  • CCTV
  • Global Control System