Siemens SCADA Specialist

Certified ISO 9001, ISO 45001 & ISO 14001

Case Study:
SCADA for remote berth monitoring

AIS develops secure Win CC OA application for critical national infrastructure

Project Background

Dover Harbour Board manages one of the world’s busiest sea crossings, providing berthing services to two primary customers – the ferry companies P&O and DFDS.  At Dover, six electrical and hydraulic ferry berths are operated, to enable up to 10,000 cars and lorries to drive on and off the ferries every day, with a 50-minute turnaround time.  Changing tides mean the six berths require constant monitoring with an engineering team on standby to keep operations moving.

Port of Dover required an integrated, site wide SCADA system to remotely monitor the six ferry berths. This would enable the organisation to run more efficiently and reduce operational issues, capture performance data to proactively improve the ongoing running and berth maintenance services, plus provide a better understanding of possible problem areas.

Although the original control systems did provide berth system monitoring, they could only operate locally. If problems were detected with a berth, it was already too late for remedial action by the time problems were detected and impossible to issue an early warning signal to alert operators that they should use an alternative berth.

“We have a level of operational awareness that didn’t exist before, which means we can focus on continuous improvement, both in terms of customer service levels and cost efficiencies. Over time, being able to direct maintenance efforts exactly where they are needed will translate into having more resources to invest in improving the services provided to ferry operators and ensuring a better, faster turnaround time.”

Barry Martin
SCADA Project Engineer, Port of Dover


  • Improved data analysis – enhanced level of alarm/ incident awareness to support continuous improvement by M&E
  • Improved communication and visibility – integrated SCADA delivers a single view of the entire berthing operation from the central control room and detailed business reporting capabilities
  • Improved efficiency – focused preventive maintenance, supported by intuitive, animated user interface displays
  • Improved customer service levels – improved maintenance means faster, more reliable berthing services for ferry operators
  • Cyber security and safety compliant – based on IEC62443 Cyber Security Framework for Critical National Infrastructure and 61508 SIL2 approved products to meet future functional safety requirements
  • Future proof – system allows scope for future assets to be monitored and capabilities expanded. Phase 1 provides remote monitoring of ferry berths. Further expansion to other systems and the possibility to remotely control berths is planned for Phase 2.
Customer Case Study Image: Port of Dover
Oil Analysis Report

Solution Delivered

  • Integrated, site wide SCADA berth monitoring system connected all six berths to allow secure remote monitoring of all operations from any user PC.
  • System complies with IEC62443 cyber security requirements for Critical National Infrastructure and AIS added an extra layer of security to the system architecture, with enhanced protection.
  • Using Siemens WinCC OA as the basis of the SCADA system ensured the system can meet functional safety requirements – up to SIL2 – in accordance with BS EN61508
  • Berth operation staff can monitor the systems from the central technical office. If an alarm or fault is detected on the berth, they have visibility much earlier to action alternative arrangements and keep traffic flowing.
  • Reactive maintenance turnaround times have improved and email notifications are sent straight to relevant engineers. Since alarms are triggered centrally, maintenance engineers are directed straight to the area of problem, enabling faster resolution and an all-round more efficient service.
  • PoD engineers can conduct trend analyses on system behaviour and faults and understand why issues could have occurred to improve predictive maintenance and long-term performance.
  • AIS has produced a series of bespoke reports using BIRT Reporting Designer, an open source reporting application, to create data visualizations and provide PoD with improved intelligence.

AIS added value as control system integrators

  • Critical national infrastructure specialists and approved Siemens WinCC OA SCADA experts
  • Ability to integrate multiple, disparate control systems and provide a single, intuitive user interface that meets the latest cyber security and human factors development requirements
  • Experienced at developing SIL2 life safety systems
  • Collaborative design approach ensures high user acceptance with projects delivered on time and within budget.