VII International forum
“Marine Industry of Russia”
Hotel complex
Department of affairs of the President of the Russian Federation

Moscow, 24, B.Yakimanka Str
24-25 May 2017
Forum bulletin

More on port facilities and equipment

More than half of the world transportation volume accounts for waterways, and ports are the place of cargo transshipment from a water vehicle to a land one, and vice versa, which conditions its operation and heavy-duty equipment. Port facilities comprise various reloaders and pick-up mechanisms, ship fuelling and ballasting/deballasting facilities, onshore power plants, fire extinguishers, communication and illumination systems, and so on.

Handling facilities are divided into continuous and intermittent action equipment. Generally, the first is used for bulk cargo transshipment and consists of stationary and mobile conveyors and unloaders. SUM or ship-unloading machine designated for bulk cargo unloading and their transportation to onshore installations of continuous action is comparatively new equipment. For fluid or gas delivery, port hydraulics are used represented with pneumatic or hydraulic plants, pump stations, etc. Transshipment equipment of intermittent action is various lifting appliances (overhead, frame, portal and semiportal cranes) and car dumpers. Besides, other equipment is used (reach-stackers, forklift loaders, log-hauling trucks, dummy cars, etc).

Rotating platforms and arms of portal mobile cranes are fixed at high track-guided gauntree. One track of a semiportal crane is placed on the wall, quay with battered faces (delta shaped supports). Depending on works, portal and semiportal cranes can be transshipment and assembly.

Reach-stackers are loaders designated for container handling. As against the forklift loader with frame lifting support, the reach-stacker is differs in a telescopic boom with container gripper (spreader). They are heavy-duty and highly maneuverable, and can turn containers in the process of the transshipment. There are reach-stackers which can move containers down into vessel holds.


Today, development of port transshipment facilities has various directions. The first entails capacity growth caused by growth of number of heavy cargoes and volumes of container shipments. The second is development of transshipment facilities used for processing of palettes and packages, which suppose possible simplification of port facilities processing RO-RO ships. Such vessels have their own lifting appliances – loading ramps.

However, the main direction of development of port transshipment facilities involves port mobile cranes (PMC) which can replace other cranes. They appeared and became widespread due to several reasons the main of them is deadweight growth entailing extension of unloading operation time. PMC differ in type of the driver (electric, diesel-electric, diesel-hydraulic and mixed). Sennebogen, Gottwald, Liebherr and some other companies lead the sector of mobile lifting appliances. Generally, companies offering such equipment on foreign markets work for smooth customer servicing.

Another trend consists in wide use of reach-stackers. Since the middle of the last decade, these facilities have been driving out cranes and forklift trucks. This fast conquest of the market bases on the growth of share of small terminals and port congestion. Reach-stackers used as port transshipment facilities cutout costs as far as they don’t need complex infrastructure necessary for heavy-duty lifting facilities. In Russia with its shortage of inland river freight terminals, application of these facilities would have undeniable advantages. However, due to small share of container freight in the total cargo traffic, need for them is rather law now. Besides, application of reach-stackers is limited since degree of the gradient of the way cannot exceed a certain grade, asphalt covering is to be of high quality, while equipment of the passages for these facilities can lower terminal capacity. So, some observers consider installation of complexes comprising one unloader and four frame cranes for container handling can solve this problem in a more efficient way.

Situation in Russia

Today, the majority of facilities of Russian ports is worn out. And this statement is true even in respect of naval ports. With enormous funds allocated to the defense (including port facilities) and design of the unique crane for installation of reactors into nuclear ice-breakers (with pinpoint precision) at the time of the USSR, today the country lacks such equipment. Russian ports also suffer from lack of up-to-date car dumpers, so grapples are used for unloading causing railcar damage in 15% of cases.

Yet, Russian ports are replacing out-dated port facilities. Thus, the commercial port in Vladivostok possess several mobile cranes by Gottwald. Recently, Russian ports prefer to purchase imported equipment while during crisis they reorient to domestic manufacturers. It should be noted that many Russian plants modified production technology and started intense usage of parametric modeling. So, the quality of produced equipment has raised and now it can compete with imported one.


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