Schenker has fitted out ten of its containers with special sensors in addition to RFID technology. These GPS security devices communicate the current GPS coordinates, temperature levels and security parameters (like door activities). The transport units are in regular use between Hamburg and Hong Kong.
The first test phase for the RFID technology has been successfully completed. RFID status notifications communicate the most important points where liability changes hands, when the containers are loaded and unloaded at the packing stations in Hamburg and Hong Kong, as well as the time of arrival at the terminal. This gives a clear view of when and where the load is being transshipped.
"It is becoming clear that this technology will be ripe for serial production in the near future. At least the RFID technology promises to be suitable for use on a wide scale, from a business point of view as well," commented Dr. Wolfgang Dräger, Senior Vice President, PM Ocean Freight, Schenker AG.
The new GPS sensors give information at regular intervals about conditions in the container: is it cold or hot, are there any sudden temperature changes? Does the container get shaken up in the course of the journey? Does it deviate from the planned route? These and other data are compiled in a report, which Schenker can then consult. "As soon as this technology is ready for serial production, it will open up new possibilities of service to our particularly demanding industrial customers," explained Dr. Wolfgang Dräger. "For example, the temperature of pharmaceutical products and other sensitive goods can be continuously monitored, which could come out cheaper in the long term than transporting them in refrigerated containers, provided that the appropriate temperature tolerances can be guaranteed."
It is a similar situation with goods that are vulnerable to shock, like laptops and other valuable articles. Even if it is not possible to prevent the goods from being shaken about at all, at least you can determine in retrospect when and where they have been exposed to shock and what has occurred. Finally it is possible to determine when and where the door of the container has been opened. If this happens unexpectedly or the door is forced, an alarm is triggered and at the same time appropriate security measures will be initiated.
As RFID manager at CHEP, Gerry Wind will drive the development of ‘track and trace’ systems on high-profile projects for CHEP customers.
Gerry Wind brings a passion for technology and automation, coupled with 23 years’ experience in RFID, supply chain management and logistics. His particular expertise is in developing RFID infrastructure that integrates with business systems to improve the efficiency of supply chain processes.
Gerry Wind has advised government and industry on RFID and addressed conferences across the globe. More recently at Telstra, his team developed an Adaptive Asset Manager system that enables live demonstration of RFID readers with updated results on a ‘dashboard’.
An all rounder, Gerry Wind is widely travelled and fluent in two languages. His diverse career includes time in Uganda as project manager for a charitable organisation, and as a consultant with Sunshine Technologies. He also managed 152 staff at Australia Post’s State Parcels Centre in Queensland.
STEELBRO New Zealand Limited took out both the Global Operator and Supreme overall award for medium/large enterprises at the recent 2007 Annual Champion Canterbury Awards.
The awards were presented by the Prime Minister, Helen Clark. The Champion Canterbury Awards are now widely recognised as the largest of their kind in New Zealand.
Peter Townsend, Chairman of Champion Canterbury Ltd. says the award recognises the innovation, tenacity and sheer hard work to succeed.
“STEELBRO is a very worthy recipient of the Supreme Champion Canterbury Award. As a multi-generational contributor to the Canterbury economy and a company that is well versed at competing worldwide with products that find ready markets in a myriad of countries, this is a well-deserved accolade.”
STEELBRO has developed a successful self-loading trailer (sidelifter) container handling technology. Claimed to be the world’s best-selling sidelifter system, STEELBRO exports the units to over 100 countries worldwide.
The Queensland infrastructure crisis has reached a new low with Michael Roche announcing a “new wave of industry activism” weeks before the release of the Goonyella Supply Chain review writes Daniel Hall.
Roche made the call after announcing that a coal transport rail corridor between the northern Bowen Basin and the Abbott Point export terminal in Queensland had been given the green light by coal companies.
“Despite the project’s potential to consolidate future growth, there is no hiding the fact that industry’s interest in the Northern Missing Link and expansion of the Abbott Point coal terminal is a direct response to the difficulties being experienced along the Goonyella corridor,” he says.
Roche says that seven companies interested in using the 69 kilometre Northern Missing Link had confirmed with the Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) their willingness to underwrite early works costs undertaken by the State Government-owned Queensland Rail Network Access (QRNA).
Queensland Rail (QR) has welcomed confirmation that mining companies are willing to underwrite early works costs for the project in North Queensland.
The early works costs associated with the 69-kilometre Northern Missing Link are estimated to be worth $27 million and will be recouped by the State Government through QRNA via independently determined rail price arrangements, regardless of whether the project proceeds.
“Once endorsed by customers the cost with the early works will, upon completion of the early works, be included
in QRNA’s regulated asset base for the Goonyella System,” a QR spokesperson says.
“Access charges for the operation of coal services on QRNA’s rail infrastructure is based on recouping the capital charge (depreciation and return) as well as maintenance and operating costs as agreed with the Queensland Competition Authority.”
“Final go-ahead will depend on execution of port and rail contracts by the companies, which will in turn depend on the economic findings of this early stage engineering and design,” Roche told the Rail Summit.
Roche’s call for a new wave of industry activism may have been heard by QRC’s largest member companies.
During a whistle-stop visit to Brisbane, Rio Tinto boss Tom Albanese told reporters that the backlog plaguing Australia’s east coast ports is among the top five problems facing the mining giant’s global operations.
Albanese said Rio Tinto will redirect its expansion plans offshore if the Queensland Government does not provide vital infrastructure, prompting Queensland Premier Peter Beattie to meet with him to smooth over relations.
Roche says that unprecedented growth in the industry is responsible for the delay in haulage capability up to a point.
“There’s no embarrassment in saying that the demand for coal has caught both the industry and logistics suppliers by surprise,” Roche says.
“However, there is embarrassment, coupled with major financial penalties for service users, when infrastructure providers cannot manage to deliver contracted capacity.”
“Resource companies should not be hamstrung by their logistics suppliers. Communication must extend to customers, regulators and shareholders to eliminate ‘suprises’ which cost throughput, drive up demurrage bills and encourage buyers to look elsewhere for reliable supply,” he says.
Expressing disappointment with Roche’s comments, Queensland Rail says QR and industry partners
are midway through the independent review of the Goonyella Coal Supply Chain.
“We’ve received a lot of attention recently about performance in the coal business and we’ve certainly heard our customers’ concerns,” says the QR spokesman.
“QR has always accepted that we could have performed better, but like all industry players the size and scope of global demand for coal was not forecast.”
“QR’s attention now is finding short term gains in the supply chain to meet immediate customer needs and to roll out long-term infrastructure and rolling stock upgrades to meet growth through to the end of the decade and beyond.”
The QRC’s independent review of the Goonyellla coal supply chain, due early August, has been supported by the Queensland government and QR.
According to Roche, the review is expected to highlight the need for strategic coordination of the coal chain master planning process, greater transparency on operational issues and performance, and an agreed set of measures to asses how the system is operating.