Port operator PSA Singapore will showcase its future port vision, with new technologies for the container terminals in Singapore, including amphibious drones, automated quay cranes, exoskeletons for port staff, and robotic arms for related container activities.
PSA will present its vision of transformation of jobs through technology and innovation at the the PSA ‘Intelligent Port of the Future’ Exhibition from 10-14 January 2018.
Currently, lashing specialists fix and remove twist locks during the container loading and discharging processes alongside the quay cranes. Advancements in technology will streamline this process, where automatic platforms or robotic arms could be used instead. PSA is looking to upskill workers performing such tasks, so that such work can be aided by mechanisation, allowing them to assume other higher value-add responsibilities.
In addition, PSA is considering new types of unmanned drones that fly autonomously through software controlled flight plans. Drones can be used to fulfill ship-shore or shore-ship deliveries. Working with on-ground IoT sensor networks, drone surveillance can also help with terminal security, providing an easier, faster and cheaper method of data collection. Inspections are also a major application for drones, as engineers can perform inspections at a safer distance, eliminating the need to work at height or enter operational areas. PSA is also looking towards the development of amphibious drones to operate over and land on water to inspect wharf side fenders.
Furthermore, PSA plans to leverage data analytics in the future port in areas such as equipment specialist performance, crane maintenance and simulation models which allow PSA to simulate container port operations. To enhance equipment specialists’ performance, data analytics would work in tandem with machine learning to analyse work performance. It could be used to pinpoint specific areas of improvements for individual specialists with greater accuracy, via the recording of information through sensors mounted on port equipment.
What is more, using Augmented Reality (AR), smart glasses will provide port equipment specialists with live visual aids and off-site assistance. The AR technology facilitates the visualization of an equipment’s components and the tracing of its defects. These will ease the troubleshooting process and reduce the downtime of faulty equipment. The ability to see visual indications and communicate with subject matter experts in a mixed reality space will also allow proper guidance and create an effective learning experience at every repair.