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Metal and Composite Intermodal Containers in Comparative Cold Tests with Wood Chips

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DOI: 10.4236/jsbs.2015.51003    3,465 Downloads   4,127 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Intermodal containers have many advantages in the bulk supply chain, but idle times may cause freezing problems for containers in terminals and long-lasting deliveries, especially during the winter time in Nordic conditions. The aim of the cold tests was to study metal and composite containers’ ability to tolerate wood chips freezing into the inner surface of the container. Two of the containers were normal metal containers and one was a composite container. The loaded containers were put inside the laboratory hall, the temperature of which was -30°C, and kept there for variable times: less than 24 hours. The inner surface of one of metal containers was treated with a special coolant, EC1. After the test, the chips were unloaded, and the container walls were checked to determine whether there was any material left on them. The test results indicated the advantages of composite containers having a thermally insulated structure without freezing problems. At the same time, chips were freezing badly onto the floor of both metal containers. A frozen chip layer with a thickness of approximately 50 cm - 60 cm was stuck to the floors. As such, EC1 did not seem to prevent the freezing of the chips onto the inner surfaces. The results proved that intermodal logistics of truck and train transportation would be more suitable for composite containers than for metal containers in the winter time in Nordic conditions.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Föhr, J. , Karttunen, K. , Enström, J. , Johannesson, T. and Ranta, T. (2015) Metal and Composite Intermodal Containers in Comparative Cold Tests with Wood Chips. Journal of Sustainable Bioenergy Systems, 5, 32-39. doi: 10.4236/jsbs.2015.51003.

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