A Kalmar Hackathon

Kalmar organised its first hackathon CargoHack on 8-10 April 2016 at its Technology and Competence Centre in Tampere, Finland. The event brought together about 100 participants from all around the world, including 57 hackers that formed 16 teams to solve the challenges that the terminals are facing today.

"CargoHack was a great success in many aspects. We received more than 100 applications and had to widen the event scope already at an early stage. We selected 16 teams to join in and gave them challenges covering areas like visualisation of terminal operations, use of mobile technologies, safety, and improving efficiency of the wider value chain around cargo handling," says Tommi Pettersson, Vice President, Automation at Kalmar.

The participants had access to the latest technology and equipment in the port industry, including world's largest automation test field with unmanned machines and drones, Kalmar's Virtual Lab, Application Program Interfaces (APIs), sensors and big data from terminal environment. In addition, experts from Kalmar and Tieto Corporation served as mentors for the teams during the entire event.

"Improving performance by utilising technology that is already available and safety turned out to be the most common themes in the final pitches. Many proposals looked for new ways to use drones, sensors, robots, smart glasses or other innovative tools and devices in improving terminal efficiency and safety or in creating new intelligent services for terminal operators. Some of the teams came up with new conceptual thinking to improve sharing of data and knowledge among the entire value chain of terminal operations. We even heard ideas on how to intelligently combine manual and automated operations," Tommi continues.

Customer value and business model were key criteria in choosing the winner of CargoHack. The winning concept was presented by the team Pointscene. Their unique idea of using visualisation in a terminal environment can be implemented in multiple ways.

"Overall, the hackathon proved to be a great tool and method for bringing out and demonstrating new ideas and out-of-the-box thinking. We will move forward with some of the ideas and integrate them into our product and technology roadmaps," Tommi concludes.

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Challenges and prizes.


First prize: 3000€ for the winning team

Post-event project: One of the best teams will be offered a possibility to start a further concept development project immediately after the event.

Tieto IoT prize: Apple watches for the team using IoT techonology in a most innovative way


Visualisation of terminal operations

Develop new concepts for visualisation of data obtained from machines, cameras, sensors, etc. For example, develop interfaces enhancing the situational awareness of terminal or dashboards illustrating operations’ KPIs and analytics results. You may also utilise Virtual Environments Lab and visualisation models of test field and container handling machines to enhance the visualisation. Combine visualisation models with data from the test field. Create new (virtual reality) visualisation concepts.

Terminal mobile apps

Develop mobile apps on iOS or Android to provide real-time visibility to terminal operations and machine maintenance needs to better serve customers’ management, machine operators as well as field service.
Utilise the data available from the machines to e.g. visualise KPIs and diagnostics information. Consider how the app could further digitalise and improve the operations or maintenance terminal.


Utilise the sensor data and cameras to enhance operational safety in the terminal. There is no room for accidents, i.e. machines must not collide with each other, with the infrastructure or with humans. Create and demonstrate new concepts that enhance safety.

Data-intensive solutions

Inspire us with novel ways of utilising the terminal data and considering the entire value chain around terminal operations. You may also focus on concepts related to new service opportunities. For example combine the terminal data with open and public data, mobile phone location data or additional sensors to create new value-adding services. You may also focus on analytics empowered value creation or solving challenges related to data processing in analytics, such as automated data quality validation, sensor fault identification, and efficient ways to handle and combine time serie sand event data in analytics.