Seaports and Rail Simulation Models

AECOM has developed several in-house simulation models applicable to seaports, marine terminals, intermodal yards and rail systems; providing operators with predictions of costs and benefits for alternative capital improvement scenarios.

These models allow convenient  customization of inputs, outputs and display graphics to suit our clients. Additionally we offer many standard commercial simulation models; thus providing a full complement of simulation services to transportation systems and infrastructure.
Below is a brief description of AECOM’s simulation tools, with links to demo animations and additional information for each:

Proprietary In-house Simulation Models

GMTS provides detailed modeling of marine and intermodal container terminal operations.   It can be used to compare physical layouts or operating modes and evaluate the relationship between terminal equipment types and levels and terminal productivity.  GMTS output can be used to feed detailed cost models of terminal operations.

BERTHA evaluates the capacity of container terminals by analyzing the variability in vessel arrivals, crane assignments, crane productivity, and maintenance and weather related closures.  BERTHA also tracks container inventory on an hourly basis and can be used for high level estimates of required yard cranes for a given level of throughput.

RailOps evaluates the capacity of passenger and freight rail networks, both large scale and individual terminal scale. It shows trains down to the railcar and locomotive detail, and can accommodate a variety of terminal rules for train breakup and assembly.  RailOps can be used on scaled models read directly from electronic drawings.

VNM evaluates the capacity of harbor channels, river systems, or ferry passenger or freight networks.   It can range from global vessel distribution networks to small scale harbor capacity studies.  VNM can accommodate a wide variety of dynamic conditions such as vessel fuel cost vs. operating speed, vessel draft vs. cargo loaded, tidal range, darkness, or weather closures.

BulkSim analyzes the capacity of solid or liquid bulk marine terminals.  It can incorporate a wide variety of rules for conveyor/storage/berth connectivity as well as variable events such as vessel arrivals or seasonal changes in product demand.  Stockpiles can be viewed in real time with 3D animations and custom use of colors to differentiate products.

Commercial Simulation Tools

Vissim is a commercial model used by AECOM to analyze the capacity of terminal gates or roadway systems near freight terminals.  It has excellent graphics and can be used to develop 3D visualizations of terminals to help clients better understand the look of potential development options.