Loading Arm

Overview and Key Concepts

The Loading Arm is used to load or unload items (vessels, trucks, ...) containing one or more FloWorks tanks. Its intended use is as the loading controller of a loading point.

In abstract terms, the Loading Arm is a pump which allows material to flow from (usually) a fixed tank from or into a mobile tank, i.e. the storage compartment of a vessel or truck. The loading arm is a loading controller, which means that it controls the connection and disconnection to or from the fixed tank, and signals to the berth or loading point when the (un)loading process is complete.

A typical model using the Loading Arm looks as follows:

  • A (regular FlexSim) source whose FlowItem class is set to generate FlowVessels or Trucks.
  • A loading point connected by center port connection ('S'-connection) from the loading point to the loading arm.
  • A flow source and flow tank to represent the production of material.
  • The flow tank is connected (by regular 'A'-connection) to the loading arm.
    For unloading from the vessel to the tank, the connection would have been from the loading arm to the tank.
  • A (regular FlexSim) sink to model the route of the flow vessels or trucks after loading.


The loading arm uses the standard events that are common to almost all FloWorks objects. See FloWorks Triggers for an explanation of these events.


For statistical purposes, the loading arm's FloWorks state profile will be in one of the following states at various points during a simulation run:


There is no flow through the loading arm, because no transporter tank is connected or the flow is blocked (e.g. source tank is empty).


Material is flowing at a non-zero flow rate.


The loading point object uses the following properties panels:

Custom coding

You may control the behavior of the loading arm dynamically by writing FlexScript, for example in a Script window or by changing the code behind one of the options in an object trigger.

The loading arm is an instance of the FlowObject class, see the class reference for information about its properties.