King Willem-Alexander officially opens the APM Terminals Maasvlakte II Rotterdam terminal.
Maasvlakte II opening marks new era in port operations
The world’s safest, first fully-automated, zero emissions container terminal has officially opened in the Netherlands.
King Willem-Alexander and 500 senior representatives from the global shipping industry and world governments have celebrated the official opening of APM Terminals Maasvlakte II Rotterdam facility.
Ushering in a new era in port innovation, the new facility is the world’s first container terminal to utilise remotely-controlled STS gantry cranes which move containers between vessels and the landside fleet of 62 battery-powered Lift-Automated Guided Vehicles (Lift-AGVs) that transport containers between the quay and the container yard (including barge and on-dock rail facilities).
The Lift-AGVs also represent the world’s first series of AGVs that can actually lift and stack a container. A fleet of 54 Automated Rail-Mounted Gantry Cranes (ARMGs) then positions containers in the yard in a high-density stacking system.
The terminal’s power requirements are provided by wind-generated electricity, enabling terminal operations, which produce no CO2, emissions or pollutants, and which are also considerably quieter than conventional diesel-powered facilities.
Constructed on land entirely reclaimed from the North Sea, the facility has been designed as a multi-modal hub to reduce truck traffic in favour of barge and rail connections to inland locations.
Construction began in May 2012, with the first commercial vessel call in December 2014. It represents an investment of €500 million for APM Terminals.
APM Terminals CEO Kim Fejfer said: “APM Terminals Maasvlakte II is clearly a game-changer port in the shipping industry designed to exceed our customers’ expectations. It is significantly safer for our people and all users of the port.
“It runs on a zero emissions, sustainable business model using renewable energy, benefitting the people of Rotterdam and Europe. And, equally important, our shipping line customers will experience 40% higher productivity – thanks to automation.
“The future of terminal operations is safer, high-volume, high-productivity performance. We are pleased to welcome that future here today.”
The existing APM Terminals Maasvlakte I Rotterdam container terminal, which will remain in service, handled 2.46 million TEUs in 2014 and was cited by an independent Journal of Commerce industry study as the most productive container terminal in Europe for the first half of 2014 with 102 crane moves per hour.