OPEN INNOVATION CHALLENGE BY
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.
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
Semi-automatic stowage planning tool.
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
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.
- 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:
- 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
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.
Legal requirements of the solution
The solution should comply with IMO and other international regulations.
Learn more on stowage:
Training - Making the planning >>
The cooperation project will develop in two phases:
Open Innovation Challenge Launch
Official Webinar Launch
Deadline for submission
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!
About Milaha - The Opportunity Owner
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