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Qatar Research Development and Innovation Council's (QRDI) $150,000 Open Innovation Program

OPEN INNOVATION CHALLENGE BY

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Seeking innovative solutions to Automation
and optimization of stowage planning

As part of QRDI Open Innovation Program, Milaha is looking for technologies, processes, and innovative solutions to automate stowage planning and ensure automatic optimization of container allocations and incorporate the system into existing Milaha operational systems. Milaha is seeking:

  • High level of automation
  • Optimize the stowage planning
  • Minimum errors
  • Minimum rework after vessel and terminal review
  • Minimum amount of restows
  • Maximize twin lift operation for 20 feet containers
  • Improved vessel balance

Currently Milaha is operating with the eBMS system, which is a legacy system phasing out. In the coming months, Milaha will deploy a new operational system for their container shipping operation, which should be able to integrate with the proposed solution. (Integration is an essential part, e.g., once containers are confirmed and a vessel nominated, automatic allocation occurs)

Milaha is a Qatari Public Shareholding Company with the diversity to deliver seamlessly integrated transport and supply chain solutions. Today, with an expanding fleet (9 operated vessels currently), state-of-the art equipment, well-trained manpower and world-class partners, Milaha is competing to become a globally recognised player in maritime and logistics services.

Possible solutions

Currently, there are several stowage solutions available on the market, but only a few offer semi-automatic stowage planning. The level of automation and precision varies from vendor to vendor. In the end, the decisions regarding planning are made by the stowage planner, who should review the alternatives provided by the stowage planning tool and either approve it or make the necessary adjustments for secure vessel stability and compliance with different norms

Discarded Solutions

Semi-automatic stowage planning tool.

Learn more about the Challenge

Challenge Details

Background

Currently, a stowage planner at Milaha receives all details regarding containers nominated for a certain vessel, runs the semi-automatic stowage tool and manually checks and relocates each of the containers on board that vessel (e.g. transit containers go on top, refrigerated containers near to power plugs, etc.). The process is manual, time-consuming, and results are prone to human error.

Current planning process

Each port must be planned, since in each port, where the vessel arrives, she loads and discharges containers. The quantity of containers loaded and discharged may vary depending on the port and the conditions of the market.

Size of containers

The size and weight capacity of the containers is standardised globally as per international standards ISO 1496

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Standard space

The container slots in the vessel are designed to accommodate standardised container sizes. However, a container vessel carries not only containers but also oversized cargo. Of this kind of cargoes, there are 2 types: “break bulk” (BBK) which is cargo that is stowed on board ship in individually counted units, usually due to their weight or size and “out of gauge” (OOG), which is any cargo that cannot be loaded into six-sided shipping containers simply because it is too large. For stowing those oversized cargoes, flat racks are usually used.

Additional to this oversized cargo types, there also special container types that need to be placed in specific locations of the vessel:

  • Refrigerated containers which need to be placed in a specific area of the vessel where they can be plugged into the power supply for the refrigeration unit to work.
  • Open Top container which is a standard container without a roof. Those are used for cargos that are considered over height preventing the stowage of other containers on top.
  • Containers carrying Hazardous cargoes need to be placed as per IMDG recommendations.

As per intentional regulation, cargo carried in a sea vessel must be classified as per IMDG classification. Depending on the category the cargo must be placed in a specific part of the vessel. Also, there are restrictions regarding what cargo can be adjacent since some material could react chemically when being in close proximity.

Requirements

MUST HAVE

  • Integration with Milaha's systems is an essential part of the proposed solution; that is, once containers are confirmed and a vessel nominated, automatic allocation occurs.
  • Optimization capabilities, maximizing the amount of effective loading / discharging moves with less restows.
  • Automatic update: The stowage tools should be able to update any change after validation by:
    • Terminal
    • Vessel (including information from ballast tanks and vessel stability)
  • Comply with IMO and other international regulation.

NICE TO HAVE

  • Terminal yard mirroring (for Main terminals)
  • Performance indicators

Technology Readiness Level (TRL) sought:

5 - 8

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Data security requirements of the solution

Due to the sensitive nature of the information and the integration with Milaha's system, the solution should offer a high level of security.

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Legal requirements of the solution

The solution should comply with IMO and other international regulations.

Additional Information

Learn more on stowage:

Considerations

Lashing

Training - Making the planning >>

Examples

Automation

Timeline
The cooperation project will develop in two phases:

Open Innovation Challenge Launch

1st July

Official Webinar Launch

08th of September

Deadline for submission

30th September

Selection of candidates

Phase 1 2022 -2023

Proof of concept - Pilot implementation - Adaptation (2022-2023)

Phase 2 within two years

Collaboration agreement for full scale installations

Register for the Webinar!

Join the experts of Qatar Research Development and Innovation Council together with its corporate partner Milaha for an exclusive webinar on QRDI Council $150,000 Funding Open Innovation Program and Milaha's introduction to its new Open Innovation Challenge:

  • Seeking innovative solutions to Automation and optimization of stowage plannin

Find out about the types of collaboration we are offering and learn about the partnerships we already have. This webinar will give you access to essential insights that will help you build a winning submission and room to ask all the questions you may have on the challenge!

FAQs

The focus of this program is mainly the private sector.The Open Innovation challenge is open to start-ups, SMEs, and Corporates. Universities can participate through a partnership with the private sector. The lead applicant should be part of the private sector. We welcome submission to this program for companies and organizations as inside Qatar, as outside Qatar. This challenge is not open to employees of QRDI and Milaha and members of their families.

The submission process is already open. You can apply by visiting this linkhttps://qrdi-councilopeninnovation.innoget.com . Choose a challenge which you want to apply to and click the “Write proposal” button and follow the steps to have your proposal submitted.

Participants can submit more than one proposal.

The status of your submissions can be checked from the “Replies” dashboard on your Innoget.com account.

Yes, both teams and individuals can participate. They will be evaluated in the same way, since what is important for us is the idea/proposal.

No, proposals can’t be edited after submission. Please make sure your proposal contains all required information before you submit it to Milaha

The status of your submissions can be checked from the “Replies” dashboard on your Innoget.com account.

Evaluation criteria is driven by the information that is required in the submission template. One important criteria for evaluation is innovation which requires further development and initial prototype and pilot engagement with partners. The following topics will guide the evaluation process: 1) Quality of solution and technical validity , 2) The Solution implementation includes necessary resources, timeline to prototyping and roadmap to upscaling, and 3) Company experience and team-lead/engineers experience.

About Milaha - The Opportunity Owner

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Milaha is a Qatari Public Shareholding Company with the diversity to deliver seamlessly integrated transport and supply chain solutions. Today, with an expanding fleet, state-of-the art equipment, well-trained manpower and world-class partners, we're competing to become a globally recognised player in maritime and logistics services

Contact us

Submit your comments or general inquiries regarding these challenges. We appreciate the opportunity to be of assistance.

Haya Al Ghanim

Program Director at QRDI Council