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Ground broken on Singapore's Tuas Port set to be largest automated terminal in the world

Singapore has broken ground on Tuas Port, which at 65m teu when fully completed is expected to be the largest fully automated terminal in the world.

Ground was broken on The SGD20bn ($14.5bn) Tuas Port development by Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday morning, and it will be operated by the Lion City’s terminal operating giant PSA.

"Tuas Port is also an opportunity to peer over the horizon and rethink the future of shipping. Because the port will be on a completely greenfield site, we can design from a clean slate and make innovation and sustainability key features,” PM Lee said in speech at the ceremony.

The first berths at the port are due to come onstream in 2021 with PSA transferring all the business from its Tanjong Pagar, Keppel and Brani city terminals to Tuas by 2027. Tanjong Pagar terminal closed to container traffic at the end of 2016.

Read more: Could this be the last containership to call PSA Singapore’s Tanjong Pagar Terminal?

Traffic from Pasir Panjang Terminal will be consolidated in Tuas Port by 2040, which is slated to have a capacity of 65m teu. The port will have 26km of deepwater berths.

Peter Voser, PSA International group chairman, said, “Tuas is an opportunity for us to reinvigorate and reimagine. By venturing beyond the physical port into complementary logistics capabilities and integrated digital systems, PSA will take the lead in transforming the industry to better deliver holistic cargo solutions for our customers and promote greater supply chain efficiency.

The terminal will feature automated quay cranes with an outreach of 25 containers and a lifting height of 55 metres.

Transport in the container yard will be by driverless automated guided vehicles powered by fully electric drivetrain with regenerative braking capabilities, as well as automated rail mounted gantry cranes. Tuas Port will also feature predictive maintenance capabilities, and a smart grid to manage power consumption and use a combination of power sources including solar power and LNG.

The port is seen as being part of the wider Tuas Ecosystem integrating industry and supply chain nodes. “The integrated Tuas Ecosystem sets the stage for Singapore to not only consolidate our position as the world’s largest transhipment hub, but also reinvent ourselves as a leading global supply chain and logistics centre,” Voser said.