Ship loader automation is a major optimisation target for export terminals globally. Despite several claims, available solutions do not provide satisfactory outcomes, nor do they achieve safety system requirements.
As one of Australia’s leading coal terminal automation specialists, MRA can provide a solution that is built upon its domain knowledge and its past internal research and development.
The first and largest step to achieve ship loader automation is collision avoidance, which requires accurate knowledge of the ship loader position in relation to the vessel. Once this is achieved the fundamentals of MRA’s Stockpile Management System can be applied to determine the material profile to provide full automation.
MRA draws on its vast experience with export terminal control systems to assist its clients with their automation requirements. With more than 18 years of specialist industry experience and working closely with clients to meet their needs.
Ship Loader Collision Avoidance
MRA recognises that interest in Ship Loader Collision Avoidance primarily stems from safety concerns of operators being located on boom structures as well providing greater positional awareness for operators regardless of their location. MRA’s solution meets the following functional requirements:
- Accurate real-time vessel position determination
- Roll, pitch, yaw and heave
- Provide minimum separation distance to operator via 3D visualisation and audible alert
- Integration into existing control system, compatible with all major brands
- High reliability with self-diagnostics and alarming
- Configurable for all ship loader types:
- Deflection plate
- Rotating cabin
- Suitable for all vessel types:
- All Vessel Classes
- Bulk carrier or Barge
- Deck gear – cranes, ropes, lights
- Hatch cover types – Rolling, folding, lifting
Points of Difference
MRA’s solution provides the following key points of difference and additional features including:
- No sensors or additional equipment required on the vessel
- No database of 3D vessel models required
- Integrated by industry leading control system experts
- Vast knowledge in the application of sensing technology, through extensive experience in similar environments for other applications
- Predictive modelling and advanced filtering methods to compensate for aberrations in raw data
- Environmental compensation through scanning methods and adaptive software, particularly for rain, fog, dusty conditions and low-visibility environments.
- Synchronisation of multiple laser units for an enhanced effect
- Real-time output of data using an Ethernet (TCP/IP) interface
- Smart technology with self-diagnostics and alarming
- All configuration and fault finding performed in PLC
- Minor installation, calibration and ongoing maintenance requirements
MRA’s solution delivers an intelligent and intuitive system that removes the guesswork for operators.
Ship Loader Automation
The second step of ship loader automation is profiling the material and combining this information with the knowledge of the vessel shape and position. MRA utilises its highly successful Stockpile Management System technology to achieve the profiling of the material on the vessel. The basis of the material profile model is constructed from machine position information and material properties, which is then updated with sensing technology data. With all of this information at hand the ship loader can automatically follow an adaptive loading plan.
- Fully automated ship loading
- Positional awareness with constantly variable surroundings
- Adaptive loading based on actual material profile
- 3D Visualisation for remote monitoring
- Dual Layer material model provides redundancy
Case Study Results
Upon request, further information can be provided on the following installations:
- Port Waratah Coal Services Carrington Ship Loaders SL4 & SL5 Boom & Spout Collision Avoidance System
- Cape Preston Port Corporation Automated Barge Loader