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Ports Group ABP ‘Calling On All UK Technology Companies’ to Drive Innovation

21st October 2019
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An AFLOAT photo of Ship-To-Shore (STS) gantry cranes (background) assembled at Liebherr's Irish plant in Killarney and shipped from Cork Dockyard to the UK's North Sea port of Hull (above) Container Terminal (see: P&S news, 16th Feb). Also pictured is short-sea trader, Scot Mariner which specialises in transporting sawn Scandinavian timber products to Irish ports. A twin of the Scotline cargoship, Scot Venture is today berthed almost opposite of Cork Dockyard at Passage West in the centre of the natural harbour. An AFLOAT photo of Ship-To-Shore (STS) gantry cranes (background) assembled at Liebherr's Irish plant in Killarney and shipped from Cork Dockyard to the UK's North Sea port of Hull (above) Container Terminal (see: P&S news, 16th Feb). Also pictured is short-sea trader, Scot Mariner which specialises in transporting sawn Scandinavian timber products to Irish ports. A twin of the Scotline cargoship, Scot Venture is today berthed almost opposite of Cork Dockyard at Passage West in the centre of the natural harbour. Photo: Jehan Ashmore

The UK's largest port operator, Associated British Ports (ABP) is calling on all UK technology companies to help overcome specific operational challenges in the maritime industry.

ABP is partnering with the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN), to run the EnSiX Challenge Competition, which invites UK businesses to provide innovative solutions to help boost efficiency and sustainability. KTN is the network partner for Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK Government.

The competition will run until the end of October and will address three main areas: reducing emissions from heavy lifting equipment at ports; systems and processes which can enhance equipment operator training and provide assisted inspection tools; and, novel alternative approaches to vessel propulsion systems.

As the industry strives to be zero carbon by 2050, ABP is looking to partner with UK businesses to provide energy saving, emissions reduction and efficiency boosting measures which can improve the sustainability of port operations. The winning businesses will be given a commercial opportunity to then work with ABP to develop and roll out new technology across its network of 21 ports across England, Scotland and Wales.

Mike McCartain, ABP’s Group Director of Safety, Marine and Engineering, said: “Improving efficiency and delivering more sustainable services to our customers is part of our ongoing commitment. The UK can be immensely proud of its engineering heritage and we are drawing on this pool of world-class talent to help us meet these challenges.”

Colin Tattam, Director, KTN, said: “KTN is delighted to support ABP’s drive to sustainable port services. The Innovation Exchange programme provides a sector agnostic approach to promoting innovation challenges. The opportunity for SMEs to pitch their cross-sector solutions to a major operator such as ABP is a key factor in helping innovation flourish.”

Published in Ports & Shipping
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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