The bulk traffic It is key in the port, both due to the direct work of the stevedoring companies and the indirect one. Without this movement, for example, the San Vicente cement factory would not exist. Almost 1.4 million tons were moved in 2020, 3% less due to the pandemic. Between January and June of this year, 650,000 tons have been moved, 13% less due to the fact that the works have reduced the maneuvering capacity.
The 100% of the operations will be covered, inside the ship, and everything will be automated, says Eiffage, who changed the project to further modernize the process. In the initial ship the movements were with traditional methods, with shovels and personnel in the area. Then the method was rethought. The system is finally going to be all computerized and automated. The load will be done with tubes that will be put inside the ship to avoid dust in the load, which ensures almost 100% that there will be no emissions of particles into the environment. According to the concessionaire’s calculations, a ship that previously took three days to load will now be loaded in a day or a day and a half, almost tripling the load capacity.
The execution project represents a substantial improvement over the basic project, both from the technical point of view, fully automated, and from the occupational health point of view, and an increase in investment up to 14 million euros.
Remember, in this sense, that last June the Distribution Committee of the State Ports Compensation Fund unanimously approved the grant for nine projects with a total of four million euros. One of the initiatives to receive a grant from the Ports 4.0 project it was the bulk ship, and had the support of the Alicante Port Authority, which acted as facilitator. The project presented is a 3D stockpile mapping system, and the development of an interface for the operation with solid bulks, which will serve to achieve complete automation of the storage parks. Through a system of sensors that will scan the load accumulations, a 3D modeling will be carried out, facilitating that an operator can define the work points at each moment of the process, from a control room, thus allowing the handling of the machines more efficient and simple.
The consolidation of the project will be carried out in Alicante, being implanted in the closed warehouse that is being built on pier 17 of the port, which promotes, in this way, the modernization, innovation and sustainability strategy that has been launched by its president, Juan Antonio Gisbert García. The installation of this system in the port is a competitive advantage, since it will optimize the positioning of the machines, assuming a considerable increase in productivity.
An investment of 140 million until 2024 with private investors
The Port Authority It plans to invest a total of 140 million euros until 2024, of which 22 will correspond to its own actions, and the other 118 million euros will come from the dealers. Also on the table is the collaboration agreement with Adif to build a 750-meter-long freight train car park in the Alicante-La Encina line, something for which the municipalities of Elda and Villena compete. This project is key so that the port can be connected with the Mediterranean Corridor, something that has not just been defined in Madrid, as has been done with the ports of Valencia and Castellón.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.