16 Mar 2011

Virginia Port Authority orders cassette system from TTS

16.03.2011 – TTS Port Equipment AB, will supply a cassette system consisting of 10 translifters and 220 cassettes to Virginia Port Authority (VPA).  The additional equipment will serve the automated APM Terminals facility in Portsmouth, which was taken over by VPA in July 2010 under a 20-year lease agreement.

Traffic at the APM terminal doubled last year, amounting to in excess of 1 million TEU, as container operations were transferred from NIT (Norfolk International Terminal).  This created the need to re-think procedure at the terminal.  Consequently, TTS Port Equipment AB is to supply a second delivery of its innovative container handling system for use at the APM terminal, having delivered its first units in 2007.

The new equipment is used to move containers between rail-mounted gantry crane stacks and the on-dock rail at the terminal.  Containers to be transported are loaded onto the cassettes, which are detachable steel platforms.  The translifter, a self-loading trailer with 62-tonnes loading capacity, is lowered and driven under the cassette and then raised until cargo is loaded.  The translifter is operated using a hydraulic system and can be coupled to any universal towing tractor.

As drivers no longer have to leave the cab to decouple it from loads, the system enables increased productivity. Moreover, fewer trucks are needed to handle the same amount of containers, causing less environmental damage, and saving time and money.

“In our container terminal system the cassette acts as a floating buffer between container cranes and the terminal transport vehicles that transfer containers to or from a road or rail carrier,” says Michel Lyrstrand, Vice President, R&D at TTS Port Equipment AB. “Using this system, containers are quickly and easily disconnected from expensive terminal transport equipment, thus ensuring that the cranes continue to operate without stopping. This floating buffer concept is the key to our innovation in the container terminal market.”

“The decision to run port operations using the TTS handling system has been fully validated,” says Jeffrey A. Florin, Deputy Executive Director, Operations Chief Operating Officer at VPA. “The tractors and trailer sets conventionally used in most US terminal operations would not have met the efficiency demands of our current traffic levels, so we are very happy with the TTS container transfer method.”

For more information, please visit www.tts-marine.com