Transportation packaging tests

Transportation is a familiar word. Suppliers transport their products from A to B. What are the variables during this type of shipping and which will have an impact on the products? The transportation environment depends on many factors, like the type of transportation, the type of road, the distance, the transhipment, storage and the stacking. These factors cannot all be disabled. However, it is possible to protect the products so that the rate of damage is negligible.

Trial transport

Many suppliers test their packaging and packaged products by means of so-called trial transports. At the end of the trajectory, the product and/or its packaging is inspected for damage. This can be often a cumbersome, costly and rather unreliable way of testing. The results of so called ‘identical’ trial transports derogate at times with a factor of 2-3. A method of transport strongly depends on the driver, the driver’s emotions at that moment, the velocity and driving style, route, transhipment, the air humidity percentage, (final) checks and more.

Transportation simulation in a laboratory is, on average, 50% cheaper than a trial transport. It is always identical and much faster to realise.

Lansmont SAVER data recorder and lab measurements

With the use of a data recorder, the transportation environment is precisely determined. The data recorder can be attached under a pallet, packaged or attached to the transportation device directly. The recorder will register, amongst others, vibration and shock levels, air humidity, temperature and the time the signal is recorded.

A transportation trajectory is measured multiple times. The recorders’ data is analysed and processed and then used to control the vibration table. Transport can now easily and accurately be simulated, over and over again. As a result, packaging and products can be researched in a reliable and easy way, comparing the results.

Optimizations or enhancements to existing packaging and products can be executed and assessed in a controlled and easy way, testing it using the measured transportation environment. In the absence of measurement data, ASTM, IEC, ISTA, ISO and other standards may serve as an alternative.

Transport simulations enable the development of new packaging and products that will reach their destination undamaged, or with acceptable, calculated damage. S2T can execute conditioned transportation simulations and other vibration tests. Temperature and air humidity will be set to meet your demands.

Case 1:

A biscuit is a brittle product and very prone to breaking or damage. To introduce a good product to the market, a series of measurements were conducted during various transports of the existing packaging of one type of biscuit. The data recorder registered the vibration level in fixed time intervals as well as the bumps and shocks. The measurement data was then used to operate the vibration table. The transport was accurately simulated, the number of broken biscuits and the location they occurred was identical to the actual transport. Convinced by the reliability of the simulations, it was decided to no longer carry out trial transports. Over 70% in costs on the development and verification of the new packaging was saved during a significantly shorter development period.

Alternative packaging can now be developed at lower cost and tested for robustness using a reliable simulation method. The measurements and the transportation simulation provide adequate information for this decision. The projected savings are several million Euros per year.

Case 2:

Plants and flowers live a rough life during transport. During a series of transportation simulations, a vast number of plants and flowers are vibrated for a long time in 20 °C. The vibration level chosen by S2T (in accordance with ASTM and the equivalent ISO standard) was a good match for a measured trajectory from the Netherlands to the middle of Germany. Research showed that the vibrations caused a certain (stress-) hormone to develop. Experts said that this hormone causes damage that is very similar to damage caused by freezing. From a transportation simulation with just one flower, packed in different ways in various boxes, it was learned that the package too could cause severe damage to flowers (and plants). The client, using this information, has now found new directions to minimize or completely avoid transportation damage.

Case 3:

Your product and packaging can be optimized for vibrations and shocks caused by transport or any other reason. Your transport methods can be measured at very low costs in order to fine-tune your product and packaging to the transportation requirements valid for your product(s). Measurements are converted to standards (ASTM, ISO and such) that will best match these measurements. Expert guidance will allow you to save up to 10% to 30% on packaging, transport and possible damages, should you not set transportation requirements. With a good design, your product will become more vibration and shock resistant without an increase in costs.

Contact us

Do you have questions about our testing methods? Or are you interested in having a packaging test for transportation performed? Please contact us. The Sebert Trillingstechniek team will be happy to be of assistance.