Spanish Ports and Terminals support AI-based Port OCR of AllRead

This week took place the launch event of the project selected by Puertos del Estado “Port OCR Disruption”. It is a project of AllRead, focused on helping ports and terminals in Spain to automate the monitoring of assets by rail traffic in the facilities of ports and terminals in Spain.

The meeting was attended by Oscar Sala, Director of The Collider; José Llorca, Head of Innovation of Puertos del Estado, and the representatives of the ports and terminals that have supported the proposal, such as the Port of Barcelona, Port of Algeciras, Terminal Marítima de Zaragoza Services, APM Terminals Spanish Gateways and Hutchison Ports BEST. 

Oscar Sala, Director of The Collider, highlighted how at AllRead we are proof that:

We bridge the gap between science and market needs by creating technology startups that solve real problems. We understand the challenges, identify the market needs and, from there, we build innovative solutions with an impact on society and industry, such as in this case, the port industry“.

Oscar Sala, Director of The Collider

For José Llorca, Head of Innovation at Puertos del Estado, the institution in charge of the coordination and efficiency control of the port system in Spain:

“With the creation of Ports 4.0 and the funding of projects such as AllRead, our goal is to make ports and port communities aware of the importance of digitisation and to adopt technologies that streamline their operations.

José Llorca, Head of Innovation at Puertos del Estado

The aim of the project is, according to our COO and co-founder, Adriaan Landman:

“We rely on our technological innovation to democratise traceability solutions in rail freight transport and improve the competitiveness of the port logistics sector.

Adriaan Landman, Chief Operating Officer of AllRead

Artificial intelligence can reduce dependence on infrastructure

90% of the world’s trade is transported by sea, and enters the territories through ports. Goods, vehicles and wagons moving through ports are identified by “Optical Character Recognition” (OCR) systems.

During the meeting, the importance of the technological disruption that our company represents with respect to these systems was highlighted. According to Marçal Rossinyol, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Co-Founder of AllRead:

“Traditional OCR require large investments, infrastructure, controlled environments, and large physical spaces to be installed, which leaves out many of the world’s ports and terminals that do not have the necessary funding. With AllRead, we want to digitise and streamline freight traffic to enable ports and terminals to reduce not only their costs, but also their carbon footprint“.

Marçal Rossinyol, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Co-Founder of AllRead

For Adriaan Landman, “the vision of AllRead that convinced the various project participants is that, by bringing out the full potential of our innovative reading technology, it frees itself from hardware dependency.

It is a computer vision software solution using artificial neural networks. The system created is able to detect and read in real time, using any of the port’s existing cameras, the texts, codes or symbols on vehicles and containers from any image or video, even in complex environments of rain, low lighting, or high-speed movement, even if they are damaged or inconspicuous.

In this way, it is possible:

  • Fully monitor the supply chain without the high costs of procurement.
  • Implementation or maintenance (up to 80% less).
  • Offering greater precision.
  • Very low processing time.

High economic and sustainability impact throughout the supply chain

This innovation implies a significant reduction of delays and transit times by up to 25%, and significant economic cost savings (estimated at up to €80M per year) which, thanks to the implementation of state of the art technologies for traceability, will improve the efficiency of operations and reduce bottlenecks regardless of the size or volume of port operations.

In addition, it will also improve environmental sustainability by reducing emissions by up to 220,000 tonnes of CO2 and contribute to the commitment to rail transport, which is six times less polluting than road transport, and speed up the exit, entry and circulation of vehicles and goods.

In the words of Miguel Silva-Constenla, CEO of AllRead:

“This is a major challenge that will have a major impact on the supply chain and the movement of goods. Thinking of the multiple logistical nodes through which goods circulate throughout their journey, the beneficiaries are innumerable.

Miguel Silva-Constenla, CEO of AllRead

Ports 4.0 fund invests in innovation

The Ports 4.0 capital fund is the open innovation model of Puertos del Estado and the Spanish Port Authorities to attract and support disruptive projects from start-ups and technology spin-offs like us to facilitate their application in the Spanish port-logistics sector.

At the project kick-off meeting with us, we also discussed the various challenges facing the ports and terminals on which we will be working together.

The project, which starts in April and has an initial duration of 18 months, aims to continue innovating and developing the vision technology and software to make it an even more robust and accurate, multi-platform, plug and play and easily scalable solution in any port or terminal, without the need for infrastructure beyond a fixed camera or a mobile phone, which contributes to transferring all the economic and sustainability benefits to the Spanish port ecosystem.

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