Worldwide automated guided vehicles (AGV) deployments in seaports will have a CAGR of over 26% from 2022-2027 and exceed 150,000 global deployments by 2027, according to ABI Research, all thanks to global port congestion issues and other supply chain bottlenecks in the maritime industry.
“Automation enhances the reliability, consistency, predictability and security of port operations. From an environmental perspective, automation can lead to lower energy consumption and a reduced carbon footprint. Automated ports are also far safer than conventional ports. The number of human-related disruptions falls as performance becomes more predictable with automation and data capture solutions,” says Adhish Luitel, senior analyst, supply chain management and logistics at ABI Research.
From ABI Research:
- In addition to AGVs in seaports, the adoption of solutions in other modalities of the global supply chain such as rail, air and road have also seen growth. For example, over 7,000 inspection robots were deployed in rail infrastructure globally in 2021. This number is set to grow to over 12,000 by 2027 with a CAGR of nearly 9%, falling in line with the rising rail freight volume. Around 14 billion tons were transported via rail freight and this number is set to grow to nearly 16 billion by 2027.
“Automation in various modalities, despite its benefits, can also bring certain drawbacks supply chain managers might need to mitigate. Although automation can streamline workflows, they come at the cost of initial potential productivity losses that come with equipping workers with the right skillsets to operate and maintain these solutions. So, there is a change management aspect that managers and authorities need to be more mindful about,” Luitel adds.