Cargo handling by Automated Next generation Transportation Systems for ports and terminals

Euromax Terminal Rotterdam

Euromax Terminal Rotterdam with AGVs in operation

Cargo-ANTs aims to create smart Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) and Automated Trucks (ATs) that can co-operate in shared workspaces for efficientand safe freight transportation in main ports and freight terminals.

  • Duration: Sept 2013 – Sept 2016
  • Total budget: 3,9 Mill. €
  • EU Contribution: 2,5 Mill. €
  • Programme: FP7-TRANSPORT

The project builds on an active dialog with customers, workforce and authorities to maximize acceptance and exploitation of the project results.


  • Increase performance and throughput of freight transportation in main ports and freight terminals and maintain a high level of safety
  • Develop an automated shared work yard for intelligent AGVs and highly automated trucks
  • Develop and demonstrate planning, decision, control and safety strategies for automated vehicles
  • Develop and demonstrate an environmental perception system and a grid-independent positioning system

Research questions:

  • Which combination of positioning techniques and sensors allow for reliable and accurate positioning in view of the proposed applications?
  • How can reliable environmental perception be achieved, i.e. moving and stationary object detection, drivable path detection, docking point detection, absolute and relative object positioning?
  • How to set-up and integrate a vehicle control system, including high-level site planning, path planning, interaction planning and feedback control?
  • How can functional safety of automated vehicles be achieved?