Tilbury Container Services goes greener with Kalmar hybrid technology

By: | at 07:00 PM | Liner Shipping  

With fuel costs increasing and growing pressure to reduce exhaust emissions, many terminal operators are now evaluating Kalmar’s new ‘hybrid’ straddle carrier. Tilbury Container Services (TCS), operators of the only dedicated, modern, direct access deepsea terminal within the Port of London, is one such company and as part of an order for six Kalmar 7th generation ESC W straddle carriers, it has specified that one of the machines be fitted with Kalmar’s new Pro Future(tm) hybrid technology package. The other five are capable of being upgraded at a later date.

Cargotec’s Kalmar business area launched the world’s first straddle carrier equipped with a hybrid drive system in June this year. The hybrid technology package is a modular option that can be fitted to the latest ESC W straddle carriers and results in genuine fuel savings of up to 25 or 30 per cent. By delivering more moves with less fuel, Kalmar estimates that this new technology can eliminate more than 50 tonnes of CO2 emissions per straddle carrier per year.

As stated earlier, the hybrid machine is part of an order for six straddle carriers due to be delivered to TCS by the end of March 2009. The remaining five Kalmar ESC W straddle carriers are capable of being upgraded to hybrids in the future. As part of the order, a Kalmar engineer will provide on-site support for 12 months.

Kalmar’s Pro Future(tm) hybrid technology package allows hoist motors to be used as generators when lowering containers. The energy produced can be stored until it’s needed. Similarly, when machines are braking or decelerating, energy can be drawn from the electric drive system and stored. The machine’s supercapacitor energy storage system uses the saved energy before making further demands on the diesel engine for movement or lifting, thereby drastically reducing fuel consumption and emissions. An in-cab display shows the machine’s energy flow, thus the driving style can be further fine-tuned to make the most efficient use of the straddle carrier.

Ilkka Annala, Vice President, Straddle Carriers, Kalmar Industries said:

“Reducing fuel consumption in this way is both good for the environment and good for the bottom line. This exciting new order shows that both Kalmar and TCS are committed to the advancement of eco-friendly container handling technology.”

Even without the hybrid technology package, the Kalmar ESC W straddle carrier is a highly fuel-efficient machine, explained Mr Annala:

“All six of the new TCS straddle carriers incorporate a VSG (Variable Speed Generator) diesel-generator package with temperature-controlled fan technology. The VSG system monitors engine use, determining whether high or low engine power is needed. By automatically matching power output to demand, fuel consumption is reduced with a resultant lowering of exhaust emissions.” Owned by Forth Ports plc, the Port of Tilbury is located on the River Thames, less than 30 miles from the centre of London and is growing fast.

Tilbury Container Services, which is owned jointly by Forth Ports, DP World and Associated British Ports (ABP), is committed to addressing environmental issues and especially to reducing emissions. The company currently operates a fleet of 39 modern electric and diesel straddle carriers, which will be expanded with this latest equipment from Kalmar.

The terminal’s current annual capacity is circa 720 000 TEU rising to 900 000 TEU over the next two years.


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