Machine-Friendly Facility

by Nissim Agassi, Principal; Weidlinger Associates, New York, NY,


Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1993, Vol. 63, Issue 2, Pg. 44-47


Document Type: Feature article

Errata: (See full record)

Abstract: Cargo facility automation makes more efficient use of space, reduces labor and speeds operations. These are critical factors at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport—currently the world's busiest air cargo terminal, with volume expected to double by 2000—where a highly advanced automated cargo facility is currently under construction. The $115.5 million terminal features a computer-controlled material handling system (MHS) to receive, store, retrieve and inventory cargo. When complete, the facility will be able to simultaneously service one side-loading and two nose-loading Boeing 747-400 freighters, cutting overall ground time significantly. Structural engineers had to accommodate finely calibrated robotic machinery highly intolerant of structural imperfections. They also saved several million dollars—in part by switching to an all-steel frame for the facility. Construction of the cargo terminal started in August 1992, and the project is scheduled for completion in January 1994.

Subject Headings: Airports and airfields | Automation | Control systems | Freight transportation | Robotics

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