The pattern of cargo reception and shipment has changed with the use of the freight container – container, box or LO/LO (lift on/lift off). The use of containers, which started more than 40 years ago, in intercontinental traffic is now available in most seaports worldwide.
In the 1960’s, many seaports either had inadequate container facility or none at all. Consequently, export shipments often relied on conventional (break-bulk) vessels. The cargoes were placed alongside a vessel for hoisting on board. The stevedores (longshoremen) were often employed to carry cargoes on and off the vessel. The loading and unloading of vessels consumed too much time, which caused dockside bottlenecks and delayed shipments. With the increased use of containers, the congestion was decentralized. The problem of congestion was transferred from the docks or piers to the container freight stations or terminals.
The acronym ISO stands for the International Organization for Standardization, with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The ISO freight container refers to a container complying with the ISO container standards in existence at the time of its manufacture.
Containers are available in configurations to take almost every kind of cargo and mode of transportation (ocean, air, road, and rail).
In terms of the type of cargo for which the containers are mainly intended, they are classified as general cargo container and specific cargo container.
(1) General purpose (dry cargo) container
It is suitable for the widest varieties of cargo. It is fully enclosed and weatherproof, having rigid walls, roof and floor, with at least one of its walls, either end wall (end loading) or side wall (side loading), equipped with doors.
(2) Specific purpose container
It is used to facilitate the packing (loading) and emptying (unloading) of container other than by means of doors at one side of the container, and for other specific purposes like ventilation.
(1) Thermal container (reefer)
It has insulated walls, doors, roof, and floor, which limit the range of temperature loss or gain. It is used for perishable goods like meat, fruits and vegetables.
(2) Tank container
It is used for the carriage of bulk gases and liquids like chemicals.
(3) Dry bulk container
It is used for the carriage of dry solids in bulk without packaging, such as grains and dry chemicals. It consists of a cargo-carrying structure firmly secured within the intercontinental container framework.
(4) Named cargo types
It consists of various types of containers, such as automobile (car) containers and livestock (cattle and poultry) containers.
The unit load device (ULD) is the air equivalent of the ISO container. Due to its unique shape resembling an igloo, the ULD is sometimes called the igloo (or iglu).
The air mode containers mainly are of the IATA (International Air Transport Association) types. The popular sizes of ULD include the IATA Type:
IATA Type ULD
|8 : lower deck container||60.4″ x 61.5″ x 64.0″|
|5 : lower deck container||88.0″ x 125.0″ x 64.0″|
|3 : main deck container||88.0″ x 125.0″ x 86.0″|
Several other types of ULD are also in use worldwide.
Originally posted on June 15, 2015 @ 2:38 pm