Port of Walvis Bay phases into semi-automation

By Business Reporter

TO further improve efficiencies at the Port of Walvis Bay, the Namibian Port Authority (Namport) has upgraded its operating systems by introducing Navis N4 technology. Speaking at a media briefing in the harbour’s newly constructed control building, Namport ICT executive, Victor Ashikoto, said that automation and investment in management and security systems are crucial to ensure that cargo is handled as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Navis provides operational technologies that unlock greater performance and efficiency for the world’s leading terminal operators. N4 optimisation solutions help terminal operators automate decision making and elevate productivity across a range of critical operational and business processes. This N4 technology takes a holistic approach to streamlining operations to ensure that land, labour and equipment are used in the most productive fashion.

According to Ashikoto, the main areas to initially use this technology is the container landing, yard management and security systems. Automation of the container landing function will, amongst many other purposes, assist with sway and load control. Smart Stack, the yard management functionality, is a container position recording system which ensures yard accuracy through real time automated inventory reporting and management. It is designed to eliminate container placement errors and increase the utilisation of yard space in order to handle growth.

The Enterprise Security System features video analytics, which brings focus to port surveillance. Smart cameras have been employed to enhance port security and will only record when there is activity. Automated access control has further been implemented to 
protect people, property and assets. These new security features add another layer of security on to an already secure port.

Ashikoto explained that all the operations are controlled in an operations command centre. “The idea is to have a centralised facility with access to real-time information to enable the immediate resolution of operational issues”.

Management of the bulk and breakbulk operations in the former container terminal have already been modernised. The Logstar General Cargo management system, which provides planning and real-time management functionality, was introduced at the old Container terminal in January this year.

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