Projections show that the global ULD market will reach a size of $2.67 billion by 2027.
In recent years, more and more companies have taken to shipping goods internationally. Transport by ship is still common, but these days people have high expectations in terms of delivery times. Air transport is the quickest option for shipping goods, but there can be storage issues.
ULDs are the solution to this, making the storage and transportation of almost any goods or items more viable. So what are ULDs, and what are they used for? Keep reading to find out.
What Are Unit Load Devices?
A unit load device (ULD) is a container that’s used for the storage of goods in air transport. The most common application is for passenger baggage. By placing passengers’ checked baggage in separate ULDs, it can be much easier to locate a specific bag if needed.
ULDs can also have a range of other uses. Sometimes goods that are being transported have specific requirements. To meet these needs, manufacturers make a range of different ULD products.
Types of ULD
Companies like VRR offer a range of ULD options. These have different features that make them more suited for transporting specialized goods.
General containers are commonly used for transporting passenger baggage or air cargo. They’re available in various sizes and shapes and make excellent use of the space available.
Certain goods such as food and pharmaceuticals may have specific temperature requirements. Cold supply chains are incredibly important, and if they’re broken, they can render goods useless. Cool containers are temperature-controlled to ensure this doesn’t happen.
Unlike everything else you might store in a ULD, horses require comfort and improved safety, and these are designed to give both. These need to be larger than other ULDs, so have certain requirements when it comes to the aircraft they can be loaded onto.
These are one of the most versatile solutions available. One of the limitations of ULDs is that they take up a lot of space when not in use. Storing them can be difficult, but collapsable ULDs solve this issue.
They can be folded down and stacked on top of each other. This way, you can store more ULDs in the same space, and transporting them back after a flight is much easier. Being able to put more on a return flight will also help reduce your carbon footprint.
Safety is one of the most crucial aspects of air transport, so anything that improves overall safety is good. Electronic products are among the most common good transported on planes, and while these don’t often catch fire, there’s always a risk.
Lithium-based batteries are the main culprit, and these are often not declared. On rare occasions, these can self-ignite, and if this happens, it’s crucial that these flames don’t start to spread. Fireproof containers can help here.
They’re capable of containing a fire for several hours, giving a pilot plenty of time to make an emergency landing and get everyone off of the plane.
Sometimes you might need to transport oversized or oddly shaped items. In this case, standard ULDs might not be suitable. Some manufacturers can create custom containers that can meet very specific needs based on size, temperature, humidity, and more.
The Need for ULDs
If you need to transport goods by air, ULDs are an ideal solution. You can get a ULD to meet various requirements and even have them custom-designed if there aren’t any standard products that meet your needs.
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