Moor bang for the buck

Långnäs port, located in the archipelago Åland in the Baltic Sea, is a busy place with intensive ferry traffic traveling between Sweden and Finland. Here a new rope-free automated mooring system is set to enable a faster and energy efficient berthing process and improved levels of safety. 

The AutoMoor rope-free automated mooring system ensures quick, safe and reliable mooring operation at the international cruise ferry and domestic roll-on/roll-off ferry berths at the port of Långnäs. In addition, the AutoMoor system saves energy due to its pas-sive damping mode of operation.

Ronny Eriksson, CEO at the Port of Långnäs, says: “The port’s inter-national cruise ferry berth alone accommodates nearly 3,000 vessel moorings per year. The majority of these are some of the most advanced cruise ferries in the world, weighing from 34,000 to 66,000 gross tonnes and varying in length from 165 to 230 meters. Given the significantly high volume for a single berth, it was vital for us to upgrade both berths in the port to ensure that they con-tinue to sustain such a high vessel throughput.”

Using vacuum technology to rap-idly attach to a vessel and secure it at berth, AutoMoor reduces the ship’s movement and continuously monitors all mooring loads acting on the vessel. Live data is sent to the operator to optimize day-to-day port and terminal operations. This also minimizes personnel involve-ment, reducing the risk of human error and improving safety.

Developed specifically for use at the Port of Långnäs, Trelleborg’s AutoMoor T40 Twin Arm has two mooring arms that can operate in a synchronized manner or indepen-dently of each other to allow for the flexible mooring of vessels with vary-ing hull profiles. This enables the port to accommodate a wider range of ves-sel types. The AutoMoor T40 Twin Arm also has a compact footprint, allowing for its installation in a lim-ited space, including between gantry rails and the edge of the wharf.

“Through the use of AutoMoor at Långnäs, ship operators such as Viking Line, Tallink Silja and Finnlines will be able to manage crew rest periods more efficiently while reducing onboard personnel and operating costs,” says Eriksson. “Trelleborg certainly didn’t disap-point with their AutoMoor system, which I’ve no doubt will prove its worth in optimizing mooring opera-tions at the berth moving forward.”

Richard Hepworth, Business Unit President within Trelleborg Offshore & Construction, says: “One of the main benefits with AutoMoor is its low power consumption due to its passive damping mode of operation, where once pretension is achieved, AutoMoor’s motors turn off and the majority of mooring capacity is managed by the passive damping system.”

It has been calculated that a single AutoMoor unit can cost as little as a couple of euros per day to operate and moor vessels due to its passive mooring technology. This means operating costs are significantly less than current market offerings. AutoMoor will minimize downtime by reducing the effects that passing ships have on moored vessels. When using mooring lines, operators may need to interrupt operations, costing time and money in delayed product transfer. Using an automated mooring system to dampen vessel movement and extend the range of conditions in which efficient transfer can take place can have huge implications for efficiency.

AutoMoor is also designed to help ports and terminals become more environmentally efficient, because vessels can be secured in less than a minute and released in 30 seconds. This reduces vessel idle time and reduces the amount of time tug boats are required to travel along-side the vessel until the mooring operation is complete, cutting over-all  emissions.

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