The German company TAKRAF GmbH is specialized on planning and constructing facilities for the mining industry, including coal lading ports. A coal lading port is used to load coal, which is delivered from different mines, to ships in order to transport it to different customers. There are different types of coals handled by one port. The operating company of the considered coal lading port is expecting an increase of demand by 33%. Due to this forecast, they plan an extension of the port. Simulation is used in order to determine which extensions are necessary to reach the aimed throughput of the coal lading port.
In this paper, we describe the main steps of the simulation study. Firstly, the considered processes of the coal lading port are described. The simulation model is created using different modeling techniques. We created a simulation model using AnyLogic. This simulation tool provides a combination of different modeling techniques including several special libraries, i.e. for railway simulation.
All processes of the coal lading port from delivery to shipping are considered in the model. The coal is delivered by trains from different mines. Each wagon of a train can contain one type of coal. There are several rails at the port area where wagons can wait to be emptied. Trains are often late due to utilization and disturbances of the railway system.
Coal is loaded from wagons to conveyors by tipping stations. A tipping station can handle a train with 36 wagons. Two or three wagons can be emptied at once and loaded to the conveyors. These wagons must have loaded the same coal type. The coal is stored at heaps sorted by types. A stacker-reclaimer stacks the coal at the dedicated heap area.
Coal is delivered to customers by ships. One ship contains different hatches. Each hatch can contain one coal type. A ship must wait in the roadstead until a landing and all requested coal types are available. Loading starts when the ship has landed. The sequence of hatches is predefined. A stacker-reclaimer reclaims coal from the heap area and loads it to the conveyor system which transports coal to the ship. A ship loader loads the coal to the hatch. The ship can leave the port area when loading and toll documents are completed. A ship loading must be interrupted in case of meteorological disturbances like ice or storms. Ships must leave the port area in such a situation until weather conditions have improved.