Mobile Shiploading Flying High!

// 23 November 2021 @ 12:20

The operational success achieved within the mobile sector has gone a long way to highlight the rigidity and limitations of traditional “fixed” operations. The ability to achieve flexibility, efficiency and compliance within any given multi-cargo port along with the ability to meet all the necessary operational metrics with ease, has prompted a definitive global trend towards mobile equipment in the port. 

High Rise Design Shiploader

The introduction of the Telestack All-Wheel Travel direct “truck to ship” shiploading system has transformed the flexibility and rapidity given to operators, not only in terms of speed (achieved by faster loading rates) but also the agility achieved through the ability to operate and move large scale shiploaders within the limited space on current jetty/docks.

The surge in demand for this type of system encouraged Telestack to develop this concept further with the introduction of a high-rise chassis that enables the unloading truck to drive under the system, opening up a host of options for jetties that are restricted in width (<25m - 80ft wide jetty / dock). The demand for such a system is particularly strong in regions with a developed infrastructure which would not allow for expansion but where the desire to ‘move to mobile’ exists, based on the level of success achieved by fellow multi-purpose ports. 

International Sales Manager with Telestack, Carl Donnelly explains “before the development of the ‘high-rise’ system, mobile solutions would not be a viable option for those operations loading Handymax / Panamax type vessels. This would render the operator’s equipment selection limited to typical fixed conveyor systems or grab/mobile harbour crane systems. In modern developed Ports around the world, where space is such a commodity, certain infrastructures could only consider fixed systems as there was not enough space to allow for mobile operating systems until the high-rise design eliminated this issue. The TB Range of Radial Telescopic Shiploaders from Telestack offers a range of mobility features including In-line, Parallel Travel, Radial and Steering. This results in the most mobile All-Wheel travel system in the market ensuring the unit can move with speed, ease and accuracy from ‘hold to hold’ during the loading operation. The high-rise design allows the unloading truck to drive underneath the ship loader chassis with ease marking a host of options for the compromised jetty.”

These All-Wheel Travel high-rise mobile ship loading systems represent a new generation of mobile solutions, offering the performance of traditional systems but with the added benefits of mobility, flexibility and ultimately a lower cost per tonne achieved by increased production rates, reduced cycle times and reduced labour costs – now within a restricted jetty! The added ability to truly customise the product to the specific needs of the customer, the locality, the commodity and the quayside is yet another reason why the sector was so keen to push for a mobile solution within the restricted jetty.

Telestack offer a level of customisation that is relatively unmatched in the business and it is this level of personalisation that makes them so successful in this area. The ability to incorporate a host of dust containment /extraction options to meet the needs of the local and regional environmental regulations, whilst ensuring that it can work with more than one material (taking into consideration their differing weights, densities and flow) has meant a truly tailored solution is offered to the customer. In a recent installation of the high rise design in South America, the unit was designed with double sealed dust covers, fully sealed transfer points, dust extraction filters at transfer points, undertrays to prevent any spillage on the jetty, and a 20m (60ft) telescopic discharge chute to allow controlled trimming of the hold during the loading process. This level of customisation ensures that the system is fully tailored to the environmental needs of the operation.

Telestack are also at the leading edge of electrical sophistication and boast a growing and highly skilled electrical team dedicated to ensuring that any Telestack unit can fully integrate into the Port’s operating system successfully. In the same installation in South America the unit was fitted with a customised IP 66 Rated diagnostic control panel complete with easy to use touch screen. For the Operator, who will have to manage several different elements of the shiploading process for example, the Telestack solution will offer the ability to monitor and control the plant from a single location using radio remote control. The integrated generator manages all functions of the shiploader resulting in an autonomous and independent unit with the ability to switch to shore power as and when required. The Telestack electrical engineering team is one of the fastest growing departments within the business and the company are continually invested in working with the Client to meet and exceed their electrical needs. This level of personalisation can also extend to guarding, handrails, dust containment and much, much more!

The need for flexibility to adapt to differing operational needs in the handling of any dry bulk in the Pit to Port, Pit to Plant or Port to Plant is important. One of the main reasons for the growth within the mobile sector is the ability to use the same equipment along several parts of the logistics chain. The mobility factor ensures that a company can use the equipment as required in one area of the operation and move to another area with ease and speed, or indeed move the units to storage areas, as and when required. This is flexibility that simply cannot be achieved by a traditional fixed infrastructure.

In the current climate where the nature of any given business may have to change in response to changing commodity demands, mobile equipment allows the owner to react quickly. The smart design means that the unit can be easily dismantled, packed into containers and relocated to another site or country as the demand requires. The versatility and multi-faceted use in a variety of global applications (sea ports, river terminals, mines, quarries, power plants, cement plants, steel mills etc.) coupled with the excellent resale value ensures there is always a high demand for the mobile product.

Mobile equipment often helps reduce initial CAPEX as they are typically significantly cheaper to buy than mobile harbour cranes and stationary systems. The mobile equipment also means there are typically significantly lower civil engineering and infrastructure costs, and can easily link into existing material handling systems. The customer can very quickly be generating revenue streams. Typically designed to not require any onsite welding, a standard shiploading unit can be transported in several 40 ft containers and operational within a few weeks – all with limited/no planning requirements or restrictions as found with stationary solutions. Moreover, the operating costs are significantly less than traditional systems. The ease of use means that all machines are simple to operate, maintain and troubleshoot as there are no complicated electrics/electronics to manage, and hydraulics can be kept to a minimum.

With over 35+ years of experience under their belt and literally thousands of global installs, Telestack have earned their reputation in the international marketplace for well-designed and no-nonsense mobile bulk material handling equipment. This reputation as the innovator within the industry is as a result of their long history of bringing real solutions to problems that have long plagued the industry. As Telestack is part of Astec Industries Group, its customers in South America can rely on local support from Astec owned facilities in Chile (Santiago) and Brazil (Minas Gerais), as well as a growing network of experienced material handling agents that are focused on supporting the seaports and river terminals in that and other international regions.

In addition, Telestack’s customers are also benefiting from the support from the Telestack Helpdesk. They, with the help of the optional integrated Telematics feature, can support the operation to remotely help troubleshoot any issue in real-time. This provision has proven invaluable in the current climate where Covid-related restrictions have prevented travel and access to some sites and the Operation has benefited greatly from having the additional support from Telestack remotely.

The engineering acumen within Northern Ireland is renowned globally and the expertise within Telestack has grown and developed significantly over their tenure. Their equipment is involved in some of the most ground-breaking, exciting and forward-thinking projects across the globe with the company gaining serious traction in other industries such as the rail, power, cement and steel plants.