MSC Spain's main focus is container loading and shipping, and the issue of safety is a key concern during the logistics process. At the MSC terminal in the port of Valencia, 16 rubber tyred gantry cranes (RTGs) handle the current throughput of containers. In order to better handle the increasing TEUs (container), 12 new RTGs were obtained.
These RTGs were equipped with ultrasonic and camera devices to prevent collisions, but with repeated accidents, in part due to the crane operators ability to see only one leg of his RTG while the other leg was located 29m away in a different lane, this solution was not really satisfactory for MSC.
The company needed a system that would reliably prevent collisions and increase system availability. The outdoor laser measurement technology from Sick fit the bill.
The Sick LMS111 laser measurement system was tested by the port operator and found to meet the necessary requirements. The system is mounted on the lower side of each crane leg, and adjusts both scanning fields to the speed of the crane so that the scan field is small at low speeds, and increases as the vehicle speed increases. The fields cover the entire expanse of the crane legs.
In conjunction with the RTG’s programmable logic controller, the operator can receive a message indicating whether an object is located in the warning or stopping scan field, thus allowing the operator or the crane system to slow or stop the gantry before a collision ensues.
The LMS111 laser measurement system can adjust it's scan fields up 30° so that they scan in the direction of motion even when the crane is turning corners.
The key benefits of the LMS111 laser measurement system for users include:
- safe, collision-free operation of RTGs, ensuring smooth processing of large numbers of containers
- cost savings by prevention of collisions and substantially lower repair costs
- increased systems availability due to decreased crane downtimes.