Port authorities and operators are always looking for ways to move more cargo more efficiently and at a lower cost. Historical and real-time analysis and visualization of container terminal operations, provided by simulation and emulation, is essential when considering facility improvements or operational changes, before they are implemented. FlexTerm provides the ability to virtually see and feel how changes in ship scheduling, yard stacking, or gate operations affect terminal capacity, productivity, and efficiency, helping port owners and operators make more confident and cost-effective decisions. Terminal operations simulation and emulation can also permit- test new projects, equipment, or methodologies prior to implementation, allowing decision makers to choose the most appropriate course of action.
FlexTerm has successfully led many port owners and terminal operators to better informed short- and long-term decisions. The program’s strength is the ability to provide container terminal modeling, simulation, planning, and operational analysis that thoroughly integrates infrastructure and equipment. FlexTerm models allow planners to evaluate alternative layout options, and simulation models can examine scheduling and queue management to identify operational processes. FlexTerm can also perform simulation studies to evaluate terminal performance and configurations.
FlexTerm places Moffatt & Nichol even more firmly at the forefront of advanced marine terminal planning and design, enabling us to offer clients a wide array of simulation and emulation tools to model and optimize any combination of terminal layouts, operations, and equipment.
FlexTerm simulates bulk material routing within a terminal to help planners optimize routes, and to evaluate capacity and equipment efficiency, as well as to compare alternatives under both normal operating conditions and in the event of a conveyor or machine break down. Using FlexTerm’s detailed dynamic discrete event simulation capability, the software can model activities and constraints that impact a bulk terminal’s unloading and loading process, including train movements, train cutting and connecting, switching, sequencing of bulk unloading, working schedule, and storage. In evaluating terminal capacity and operations, FlexTerm’s animation is valuable in conveying study results through visualization that aid stakeholders in making informed decisions.
Moffatt & Nichol’s Bulk Terminal Module was developed based on FlexSim’s engine used to simulate bulk handling systems, incorporating common bulk cargo handling system components such as berth, stockpile, ship, conveyor, loading and unloading equipment, etc. It also simulates bulk cargo flow among ship, barge, train, and stockpile. The Bulk Terminal Module can be used to simulate a real system with randomness; validate bulk terminal planning and design; verify throughput and productivity; experiment with bulk cargo handling strategy; identify bottlenecks; analyze sensitivity; and optimize the system.
Energy and Power Facilities
Over the years, Moffatt & Nichol developed spreadsheet models to analyze energy and power usage by container terminals and port facilities. With the FlexTerm discrete event simulation tool, Moffatt & Nichol can now use simulation to study energy and power consumption for terminals, as well as offshore wind farm development logistics systems.
Energy and fuel costs are a significant part of terminal operating expenditures and an important factor for decision makers in evaluating different design and operational scenarios, when seeking the most cost-effective solution. To support decision makers with high-confidence and high-accuracy analysis, Moffatt & Nichol has used detailed simulation models driven by overall terminal throughput and individual equipment energy profiles to calculate equipment power consumption for individual equipment as well as equipment used terminal wide.
Moffatt & Nichol utilizes simulation to support offshore wind farm development. With FlexTerm, Moffatt & Nichol can simulate and analyze the entire wind farm development logistics system, including fabricating blades, nacelles, foundations, and other components transferring to and storing at a staging port; assembling wind turbines; and transporting to and constructing at the site. FlexTerm simulation is a valuable tool for evaluating the performance of logistics systems, optimizing the size of a staging port and equipment utilization, identifying potential process bottlenecks, and protecting your investment.