How 5G Is Making Spanish Ports Smarter

Credits: Ronan Furuta/Unsplash

The Port of Algeciras is one of Spain’s most important ports due to its location. A busy port with a constant movement of goods and passengers, it is crucial for governments and businesses alike. Therefore, it needs to operate smoothly and efficiently at all times. To ensure this happens, the Port Authority decided to update the port’s technology and innovation strategy, focusing on remote operation and the use of data. For this, it needed advanced and reliable connectivity, says an article published on Vodafone.

Total visibility and remote control

Thanks to 5G’s reduced data transmission delays and increased data transmission capacity, the port can bring greater operational visibility to staff in near real-time and also allow the use of autonomous vehicles and remote control of procedures. This is achieved with an increased density of sensors per square meter spread across its site.

For example, the control tower can now be accessed by any port operator via a mobile device, meaning they can operate the port and see key information as they move around the site.

This is helping to streamline decision-making while improving customer service and increasing levels of safety for port workers and visitors.

The project is an example of collaboration that will mark the future of the port sector within the 5G Andalusia Pilot program, promoted by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation through, which we are developing alongside partners.

Creating a digital twin

Heading around the coast towards Portugal, you will find the Port of Huelva.

The cargo and fishing port is the second biggest port in Andalusia after the Port of Algeciras, with a total annual traffic capacity of 33.8 million tonnes.

Its main task is the control of the goods that transit through it. This requires decisions about which trucks have priority over others, based on the load they carry.

Using 5G, we can share real-time imagery from the port, thanks to the installation of high-quality cameras across the site which transmit videos of the trucks transporting goods. All of which can then be monitored through a mobility data analysis solution.

And with all this information, a digital twin is created using VR. This virtual recreation of the real world allows the port to explore and simulate what real behaviour would be like if one or another decision were adopted. The result is very effective management.

Until now, the port operators did not have sight of day-to-day operations, which made things slow and inefficient. Thanks to 5G, there is now much more efficiency and better decision making, meaning a better customer experience.

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Source: Vodafone