Automated Gate Operating System at the Port of Cork


The Port of Cork is the main port serving the South of IrelandCounty Cork and Cork City. It is the second busiest port in Ireland. In 2015, total container volumes through both Tivoli and Ringaskiddy Container Terminals in Cork grew by 8 per cent over 2014 with more than 205,000 TEU handled.

The Challenge

A well-developed road infrastructure helps ease the flow of traffic to and from the port. However, inside the port, at peak times, congestion on the main road of the terminal was too common. The Port of Cork’s growing reputation for quality service, including prompt and efficient vessel turnaround could be undermined by traffic queues in front of the terminal gates. Further changes and development in the port will lead the city to close the Tivoli terminal and direct all traffic to the new Ringaskiddy terminal. The new facility will open with higher levels of automation and therefore able to handle larger cargo volumes. With the said changes, the drivers must be prepared for new processes and truck handling rules. Therefore, the management of the terminal made the decision to install a new gate operating system (“GOS”) to prepare for the future terminal operations and improve information exchange onsite.

The Solution

Visy Oy was heavily involved in the layout and design at several potential land plots that were proposed by the terminal. The Visy Access Gate Operating System incorporates both optical character recognition (“OCR”) for license plate and container code identification and RFID to identify personnel. One Truck OCR portal was installed that utilizes IP cameras for automatic vehicle and container identification. The same portal produces high-quality pictures from all sides of the cargo, and automatically stores them for the gate personnel. In all weather conditions, with pictures taken during day and night, these pictures can be used to check cargo for any damage.

To manage the driver interface, cameras and self-service kiosks at the entry and exit lanes enable vehicle identification, based on automatic front license plate recognition, and driver identification by RFID card and corresponding PIN. The Visy Access Gate Operating System is fully integrated with the terminal operating system, Softpak, to provide complete process automation for drivers with pre-booked cargo tasks. The installed Visy system enables the Port of Cork to run the gates with minimal staffing requirements and short port access times, allowing personnel to focus on delivering optimal service. Combining robust hardware with a suite of proven software, the Port of Cork has experienced improved terminal performance, reduced truck waiting times, real-time knowledge of who are inside the port at all times, and more satisfied customers. Undoubtedly, the Visy gate system at the Port of Cork is now regarded as the Irish reference point in gate automation.