Bringing innovation to container terminals in European ports to reduce carbon emissions

Focusing on the Ports of Felixstowe (PoF), and the Valencia (VpF) SUSPORTS aims to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions produced by European container ports. By locally storing and reusing surplus energy generated by container cranes radical improvements in energy efficiency can be achieved, with consequent reductions in carbon emissions.

The climate change issue

Container ports continue to be integral to Europe’s trade and economy but until now little has been done to address their carbon footprint. The Ports of Felixstowe (PoF) in the UK, and Valencia (VpF) in Spain, currently produce 65,000 and 60,000 tonnes of GHGs a year respectively. Most of the emissions from ports are generated at the container terminals where the container cranes are located. Due to the crane’s fluctuating demand and supply for energy their power management can be complex, and feeding energy back into the supply grid can result in transient faults which may affect power quality and security of supplies to other users.

The project solution

Metering will be installed on electric powered rubber tyred gantry (RTG) cranes at both ports to monitor transient power flows as a function of duty cycle. These data will form the input to a numerical model of a row of five RTG cranes connected to a single feeder power station. The models will be used to determine how to control the transient energy flows and the role that energy storage can play in reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions.

Demonstrations will be undertaken in both ports to show how energy consumption and emissions of such cranes can be minimised.

The role of Climate-KIC

Although SUSPORTS has only just started it has already started to make use of the Climate-KIC network, which helped to develop important contacts with the Valenciaport Foundation who now work as a project partner and have provided a second test site. It is hoped that in the future Climate-KIC will help to provide further contacts, funding, and move efficient port terminal technology forward.

“What’s more important is not what we’ve got out of the network but what we can bring to the network.”, CRESS