Evergreen launches Taiwan’s 1st fully-automated container terminal

Taiwanese shipping firm Evergreen Marine Corp. (EMC) held an official opening ceremony for the newly built Terminal 7 at Kaohsiung Port, Taiwan, on Monday, August 14.

Image credit Evergreen Marine

This is the first and largest fully-automated container terminal equipped with remote-controlled gantry cranes in Taiwan.

The facility was developed in close cooperation between Evergreen Marine and Taiwan International Ports Corporation (TIPC) in line with the trends in the container shipping industry and operation demands for mega container ships.

TIPC was responsible for the construction of the port infrastructure while Evergreen invested in operating systems and handling equipment.

Terminal 7 is equipped with 5 berths with a draft of 18 meters, a quay length of 2,415 meters, and 24 STS gantry cranes. Among them, 16 gantry cranes are 55.5 meters high and can handle ultra-large container ships with 25 rows of containers on deck, effectively improving the quayside operation efficiency.

Namely, Evergreen has installed 24 STS gantry cranes, including 19 remote-controlled ones, 60 automated rail-mounted gantry cranes (ARMGC) and 24 smart gates at the terminal.

The five berths of Terminal 7 will be inaugurated in two phases. Currently, Berth S5, S4 and S3B have become operational while Berth S1, S2 and S3A are scheduled to commence operations in July 2024.

When fully operated next year, Terminal 7 is expected to allow four 24,000 TEU container ships and two feeder vessels to berth at the same time. With a yard area of 149 hectares, the facility is able to store 89,238 TEU of laden containers and 43,656 TEU of empty containers. 

Over the long term, the terminal is expected to achieve an annual handling volume of 6.5 million TEU.

“In line with the trend of the international shipping industry and the operational demand of mega container ships, Evergreen consolidated the cargo handling services in Terminal 4 and Terminal 5 of Kaohsiung Port and moved the operations to the advanced Terminal 7, removing the trucking demand to haul containers between the two separate terminals and cutting carbon emissions from such transportation,” EMC’s Chairman, Y.I. Chang said.

“We made a significant investment in automatic and energy-saving equipment and also launched “Containerlink”, an online platform which improves service quality by integrating truck appointments for cargo delivery/pickup, container yard operation and digital payment systems.”

“By building the new automatic quayside operations and the unmanned yard in Terminal 7, we are able to provide more efficient, eco-friendly service to our customers and offer better working environment for local employees, taking yet another step toward our goal of sustainable operations,” he added.

Image credit Evergreen

With the introduction of 5G communication systems, optical fiber connectivity, and Internet of Things (IoT) information networks covering the entire site, together with Evergreen’s intelligent terminal operating system (EMCTOS), optical character recognition (OCR) technology and real-time power consumption monitoring system, Evergreen aims to coordinate port operations and improve the efficiency of container yard.

Image credit Evergreen

All gantry cranes at Terminal 7 are electric-powered and reach stackers and side loaders are equipped with high-standard, eco-friendly engines. In addition, Containerlink connects the data flow of container service chain in real-time to create truck appointments online.

Evergreen said that this will boost the efficiency of container yard by reducing vehicle turn-around time and eliminating the need for document printing, thereby cutting fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

Along with these new capabilities at Terminal 7 in Kaohsiung Port, Evergreen Group currently operates dedicated terminals in Los Angeles, Oakland and Tacoma on the US West Coast; the Colon Container Terminal (CCT) in Panama; Tokyo and Osaka in Japan; Kaohsiung, Taichung and Taipei Port in Taiwan; and Laem Chabang in Thailand.