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STS Crane Automation at Terminal Darsena Toscana

STS Crane Automation at Terminal Darsena Toscana

Livorno (Italy)

The project at TDT Terminal started on August 2020 with the main scope to upgrade terminal crane equipment and processes with artificial intelligence technologies and modern automated control systems.

The Orbita CraneCCR system has been installed in 6 existing STS cranes of TDT terminal.

This innovative Orbita system consists of a vision hardware controlled by an embedded software application. The CraneCCR controls the crane, ensuring a continuous monitoring of the spreader, as well as the identification of different type of movements (loading, unloading, removals, lane changes, gantry movements, etc.).

The CraneCCR hardware has been adapted to optimize image capture conditions.

The cameras provide PTZ technology, combining the latest pan, tilt and zoom camera technology with state-of-the-art control algorithms. The CraneCCR system captures container ID numbers, container ISO code, container IMO placards presence, images of all visible container sides, internal terminal truck number (ITTI) and seal presence.

All key data will be detected by Orbita CraneCCR system ‘on the fly’ as boxes are handled, at speed, across multiple quay crane lanes. This innovative method of acquiring OCR data in motion allows users to automate container identification on the quayside with minimum infrastructure and no impact on STS Crane cycle times.

The strong synergy risen between TDT and Orbita allows the two teams collaborating as a unique squad with a more creative and innovative approach. The contribution of each member has been relevant to find new and unexplored solutions.

The project Go-Live has been successfully concluded in September 2021.

The automation of the 6 Cranes has been held with a minimum impact on the terminal production.  Based on a timeline conveniently agreed with the terminal, each crane has been updated during the hours of less peak-work.

Before the commissioning of the OCR system, the STS cranes did not have communication with the central offices. The engineering team of TDT designed and commissioned a Wi-Fi solution with a good bandwith and very low latency. This new Wi-Fi network enabled the high speed data interchange to deliver the pictures of the containers from the STS to the Data Server in the office buidldings, where the clerks can supervise the operations in realtime. Although our CraneCCR can compress the images to adapt the different network configurations of the clients, this reliable and on time commissioning of the Wi-Fi network solved one of the main challenges of the project.

The combination of the Client’s technical experience with the on-site management of the cranes, together with the multidisciplinary expertise of Orbita technicians and software developers, resulted in the implementation of new software features and new specific transactions.

Results have surpassed mutual expectations by improving terminal performance and providing the terminal with customized tools.

The in-house engineering solution which was designed, manufactured, and commissioned by Orbita shows a performance success rate higher than 98%. Furthermore, the Orbita solution allows the reduction of human risks, as well as the increasing of the Terminal productivity and feasibility.


We look forward to continuing with this partnership and to keep on supporting TDT in the automation of their terminal processes.

Likewise, as stated by Giuseppe Caleo, Project Manager at TDT: “We will surely rely on Orbita Ports & Terminals for future projects”.