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Tag Archives: docking and mooring


By Richard Hepworth, President, Trelleborg marine systems operation

Vessel sizes are becoming larger, competition is increasing and broader alliances between shipping lines are being established. These factors combine to put increased pressure on ports and terminals. Our industry is famously conservative, but change is coming quickly. There will be a need for more collaboration – as different stakeholders have different strengths. This will make partnerships throughout the supply chain and across industries critical.

After signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in 2017, strategically, this is what both we and Third Harbor Consultants Company (THCC) are doing. Collaborating. To further innovation and enable improvements for our ports and vessels. Recently, this saw Trelleborg host two technical seminars (20 & 21 June) in China with consultants and engineers from THCC and CCCC Water Transportation Consultants Company (WTCC).

The seminars provided consultants and engineers from THCC and WTCC with a comprehensive overview of SmartPort by Trelleborg, which powers the critical interface between ship and port, on land and at sea. SmartPort connects port operations, allowing operators to analyze performance and use data to increase efficiencies, improve safety and improve ROI for ports and vessels alike. The system integrates assets like fenders, mooring equipment, ship performance monitoring, and navigation systems through a network of sensors.

The seminars also provided insight on two solutions that fall under the SmartPort portfolio. The first being AutoMoor, Trelleborg’s rope-free, automated mooring system that uses smart technologies to enable faster berthing and improve safety levels within the port environment.

The second was Smart Fender, a marine fender load monitoring system that can be used to measure both the impact on fenders when a vessel berths, and the ongoing force applied as the vessel continues to bear against them whilst docked. When analyzed, the data obtained has the potential to be used in several ways: such as developing a deeper understanding of berthing dynamics, which in turn could assist with future fender and wharf design, and further, feed into the revision of safe and acceptable berthing operations and procedures.

Additionally, load data may be used to determine when maintenance is needed, or indeed, a replacement fender is required. In the event of an accident, or a fender failing, the data can be used to provide information as to why – providing valuable data for insurance claims and helping ports and shipping lines to avoid the costly downtime associated with disputes.

For more on SmartPort by Trelleborg, visit:


By Richard Hepworth, President, Trelleborg’s marine systems operation

Testament to the on-going commitment to continuous improvement of the Melbourne manufacturing facility of Trelleborg marine systems operation in Australia, the company’s Environmental Management System (EMS) has been re-certified by Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance (LRQA) to AS/NZS ISO 14001 environment management standard.

The scope of the EMS certification, which has been maintained to  AS/NZS ISO 14001 since 2010, is applicable to the design, manufacture and commissioning of jetty-based and offshore mooring equipment, monitoring and control systems.

The re-certification of ISO 14001, demonstrates our long-standing commitment to our environmental obligations. Trelleborg’s marine systems operation’s facility in Melbourne, in particular, has made significant strides to advance the environmental impact of its operations in recent years, achieving some truly outstanding results – a huge congratulations to the tireless efforts of those involved.



By Richard Hepworth, President, Trelleborg’s marine systems operation

Trelleborg’s marine systems operation hosted an exclusive one-day seminar for port authorities and consultants in partnership with the company’s exclusive agent for Greece, Seamark Marine on 1st March at the Metropolitan Chandris Hotel in Athens, Greece.

The free seminar saw experts at Trelleborg discuss a range of key industry issues including marine fender selection, infrastructure regulation, the latest in docking and mooring technology, and floating fender and buoy design. In addition, the importance of rubber compound composition in the whole-life performance of fender systems was also on the agenda.

The seminar provided the ideal platform for us to connect with port authorities and consultants to discuss the importance of taking a smarter approach to port and terminal equipment optimization through the specification of smart, engineered solutions for port approach, berthing, docking and mooring. This will enable ports and terminals to reap the rewards of better informed real-time and strategic decision making, both onshore and on board the vessel.

Following on from the seminar in Athens we will host further one-day events across Europe, which we’ll be revealing more information about in due course.


Marco Gaal, Regional Director at Trelleborg’s marine systems operation

Here at Trelleborg, we’re constantly looking for ways to develop our offering to meet new market needs. To do so, we try to ensure that we’re communicating with the market as much as possible to gain valuable insights and feedback on our offering. 

As such, we will be hosting two exclusive one-day seminars featuring the themes of port infrastructure and innovation. Held on 24th March at the Mercure Hotel, Den Haag Leidschendam in Holland, and on 26th March at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London, the free seminars will see myself and a number of colleagues, as well as a number of guest speakers from across the industry, discuss a range of key industry issues, including the optimization of whole-life performance in fender systems. The seminars will provide attendees with valuable insights into marine fender design and selection best practice, and the latest docking and mooring innovations to improve efficiency and improve performance.

The new series of seminars will allow us to talk in-depth with contractors and consultants so we can ensure we’re up to date with the latest market developments and can evolve our offering to meet them.

Ultimately, it’s vital that suppliers meet the needs of their clients by offering support in the areas that customers need it most, be that maintenance, training or other operational requirements across the entire product lifecycle. In our new series of seminars, we’re striving to ensure we do exactly that.

For more information about the conference, or if you’d like to register your attendance at either seminar, visit:



By Richard Hepworth, President, Trelleborg Marine Systems

Port and terminal owners and operators, consultants and contractors are constantly under pressure. Whilst continually adapting to accommodate a changing market – increasing vessel sizes and a broader variety of ships are placing new demands on facilities, not to mention the increasing prevalence of specialised projects. They must also find ways to reduce downtime, improve accountability and ensure that marine environments are safe and operationally efficient.

Our new film highlights just how vital it is, especially in these demanding environments, to use quality materials from reliable suppliers.  Calling on the strength of in-house design, engineering and manufacturing can help to ensure that specifiers procure products and solutions that demonstrate excellence beyond installation.

Aiming to raise awareness about how to get the best value and service throughout the supply chain, the film illustrates the entire fendering and docking and mooring production process, from conceptual design through to manufacture, quality control, testing and after sales care.

Check out the full End-to-End film here.

We’ll also be releasing this film in chapters over the coming weeks, so look out for the detail on “Conceptual Design”, “Docking and Mooring Manufacture”, Fender Manufacture” and finally, “Testing and Aftersales”.


By Simon Wilson, Managing Director of Docking and Mooring, Trelleborg Marine Systems

Back In February, Richard blogged about the safety results from our 2011 Barometer Report, which showed that 81% of those surveyed believe that having a safer port environment directly contributes to reducing costs.

Safety should, of course, be a priority in all ports and harbours, but with ongoing budget restrictions in place due to the current economic climate, ports need to look for ways to improve safety and operational efficiencies while keeping costs down.

Fortunately, challenge tends to breed innovation and using established systems in new ways can counteract declining budgets. The effectiveness and efficiency of existing technologies can be optimised to reduce not only costs, but safety risks to vessel and jetty crew too.

Upgrading existing technologies with more intuitive products can improve ‘on berth’ efficiency in terms of cost, manning and, subsequently safety. For example, upgrading Quick Release Hooks to include a remote release function, removes personnel from around the mooring line at the time of release.

The larger vessel sizes coming into the market are also pushing ports to revisit their approaches to berthing and to optimise mooring operations.  Improvements to established docking and mooring equipment can produce cost efficient ways to accommodate these new vessel sizes, which are often in excess of the berth’s design, without having to make radical changes to the port’s overall infrastructure.

In addition to the importance of crew safety, it’s also about asset protection for ports. For example, using fixed or portable laser docking systems to monitor the speed of approach can allow the vessel crew to amend their speed accordingly. Thereby, counteracting the increased momentum produced by the size of the vessel and protecting the jetty from forces that are potentially too high to safely accommodate.

As suggested by the data in the Barometer Report, a safer port environment means fewer incidents, less downtime and ultimately, less avoidable expenditure. By utilising all the technologies and options available, it’s possible to maximise operational efficiencies without compromising safety. It’s important to consider creating bespoke and unique systems that complement existing capabilities in order to minimise spend, rather than replace whole systems.