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Keywords : Control systems, Discrete simulation, Transportation.
In order to accommodate the growth in intercontinental container transport, port facilities have to be up-scaled drastically. One of the major challenges is to double the capacity of the marine operation on a container terminal. In this study the model of a quay transport system using automated guided vehicles (AGVs) is integrated with a detailed model of the container stack. The result is a generic, configurable terminal simulation model.
Length, width and height of the stacking area can be set, as well as the physical properties of the stacking crane, like crane speed, cat speed and hoisting speed. Different stacking policies are designed and implemented in the model. The simple policies do not require any information about the container load or destination. A more advanced policy will use available information to improve stack performance. Performance measurements show that by using these policies a significant improvement can be achieved.
From the simulation models, valuable insights can be obtained about the optimal stack height, the number of AGVs and other variables. The results of our research can be applied on the automated container terminals in Rotterdam.
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