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Port of Antwerp invests in digitalization of radar infrastructure

Collaboration with Securitas

Radar infrastructure plays an important role in the guidance of shipping traffic. As part of this, a framework contract was recently awarded to Securitas to fully digitalize and further expand this infrastructure. Because of its location in the hinterland and the associated complex calls, the nautical chain operation is of crucial importance for smooth traffic in the port of Antwerp. In recent years, significant investments have been made in the digital interconnection of the chain partners, including more and better data exchange. At the port itself, the Port of Antwerp began rolling out vessel traffic management in 2021, with the aim of upgrading the guidance of shipping traffic behind the locks. In that context, a milestone was reached recently with the award of a framework agreement to digitalize and further expand the entire radar infrastructure.

19 radars

The 12 current analog radars will be gradually replaced and, in addition, seven radar set-up points will be added. An IALA-compliant (International Association of Lighthouse Authorities) Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) is the final objective to be rolled out by the first quarter of 2022 and will have three sectors. The introduction of VTS is in full swing.

Innovation platform

The digitalization of this radar infrastructure will further support and accelerate efforts on other innovation projects. This will simplify the connection with the digital twin APICA (Advanced Port Information and Communication Assistant). This digital twin allows various real-time data to be brought together and, via data science, translated into actionable information for a diverse group of internal and external stakeholders. Ultimately, this allows for evolving from situational awareness about the port to predictive and steering behavior. The connection to detailed radar data is an important building block in this.

Following a European tendering procedure, the framework agreement was awarded to the integrator Securitas, which will use products from the Italian radar manufacturer ICS.

Port alderman Annick De Ridder: “Our ambition is to become a world port of the future where innovation and digitalisation are key. This new radar infrastructure will help us manage our port more efficiently and is an important step towards even safer and smoother traffic.”  

Patrick Delanghe

BU Technology Director Aviation & Maritime Patrick Delanghe : “Securitas helps to make the world a safer place. We provide security services for the mainland as well as for the sea and inland waterways. We are therefore very pleased to be able to support a world reference such as Port of Antwerp with the integration of a VTS.”

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Securitas is a global leader in guarding and security expertise. Securitas combines people, technology, and knowledge to deliver efficient security solutions tailored to customers’ needs. More than 355,000 employees make a difference in the residential sector, SMEs, large corporations, and the public sector. In Belgium, Securitas has more than 6,600 employees.

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