LPS-Bulk: State Of The Art Load Planning Software For
Self-Unloading And Conventional Bulk Vessels
Two of the most important things that bulk vessel shippers
think about on a daily basis are reducing operating
expenses and maintaining high safety standards. LPS-Bulk
by Autoship Systems Corporation (ASC) of Vancouver,
Canada was designed with increasing vessel safety and
reducing vessel operating costs as key underlying principles.
These design values, combined with ASC's commitment
to continuous improvement through innovation, have made
LPS-Bulk the load planning software of choice among
best-of-breed self-unloading and conventional bulk vessel
operators around the world. So what is LPS-Bulk and
how does it work?
LPS-Bulk is a graphical stowage planning software. It
loads and unloads the vessel's cargo holds taking into
account the cargo's stowage factor and angle of repose.
The stowage planner loads cargo using a very intuitive
"drag and drop" process, loading either in
the centre of the hatch, across the hatch, or as a level
surface. The program allows unloading through hoppers
in the hold's bottom if the self-unloading vessel is
fitted with tunnel belt systems, or out through the
hatches in the case of more conventional bulk vessels.
A Lloyd's and DNV type-approved hydrostatic engine called
Autoload calculates vessel stability and longitudinal
strength parameters at every loading change. Yet how
do these features of the LPS-Bulk program contribute
to reducing operating cost and increasing vessel safety?
Reducing Operating Cost
Reducing operating cost (or minimizing the cost/tonne
of cargo moved) is achieved through maximizing load-carrying
capacity. LPS-Bulk helps bulk vessel owners/operators
realize this goal through the following:
- Accurate Loading And Unloading Sequence Reports
LPS-Bulk allows for the planning of unloading and
loading sequences that maximize effective use of vessel
or shore-based cargo-moving equipment. The sequence
reports can be sent electronically to terminal operators
well in advance of the ship arrival. Therefore time
alongside is used as efficiently as possible, and
cargo movement costs are kept to a minimum.
- Accurate Load Planning
LPS-Bulk uses exact 3-D models of the vessel's holds.
Loads are accurately defined as distributed weights.
Thus, given the correct cargo stowage factor and repose
angle characteristics of the cargo, the volume, weight
and shape features of the load calculated in LPS-Bulk
will be the same as those of the real vessel. The
user can therefore maximize vessel loading - both
efficiently and safely.
3-D Image of Cargo in Holds
Increasing Vessel Safety
LPS-Bulk includes Autoload, a first principles hydrostatic
engine. A true 3-D model of the vessel is used in all
program calculations. Therefore at any vessel trim or
heel, all results are the most accurate possible. Complete
stability and strength reports can be printed, saved,
or sent to 3rd parties electronically. These program
qualities translate into safer vessel operations both
alongside and at sea:
Autoload Main Screen - Notice
the Red Alarm
LPS-Bulk is used to develop both loading and unloading
sequences. Vessel strength calculations can be performed
and saved at user-defined stages, or "runs",
of loading or discharging operations. The LPS-Bulk
user modifies ballast tank loading accordingly in
Autoload to ensure that bending moment and shear forces
stay within the vessel's allowable limits.
- At sea
Autoload is used to monitor all vessel strength and
stability in real-time. Connection to vessel tank
and draft sensors permits accurate and timely vessel
condition analysis. If vessel stability or strength
limits are exceeded, highly visible (red in colour)
alarms come to the Autoload screen. Autoload can also
be used to carry our vessel tank loading scenarios
- both for intact and damage scenarios.
Yet even with all these great features, ASC continues
to improve LPS-Bulk.
Continuous improvement through innovation is exemplified
in Autoload. The hydrostatic engine has recently undergone
a major upgrade. Among other things, new program features
- New User Interface
All key parameters are now permanently displayed
at the top of the screen. An enhanced, new layout
and colour scheme has resulted in an improved system
of alerting the user to unsafe vessel operating conditions.
Automatic updating is available.
- Ballast Exchange Preparation
Ballasting sequence can be easily set-up, all the
while monitoring strength and stability parameters.
Easy to use editing, saving and reporting functions
- Bulkhead Shear Force Correction
Shear force correction is calculated for double-bottom
vessels and alternative hold loading as per DNV and
Lloyd's Register requirements.
These and other new innovative features all strive
to make load planning just that much easier, safer and
The New Autoload
Your Way Ahead
The underlying principles of reducing operational costs,
increasing safety and continuous improvement have set
LPS-Bulk ahead of all of its competition. Click on Contact
Us to find an ASC dealer near you, and see how you
too can start profiting from LPS-Bulk.