Sea containers – what do you need to know about their construction?

Containers are an inseparable element of every sea transport. The construction of sea containers is not complicated. They are usually used in the form of metal boxes with standardized dimensions. It usually transports general cargo.

How are sea containers built?

Looking at how the containers are constructed, it can be concluded that the construction of sea containers is not complicated. However, they must meet a number of conditions to be allowed on the market. The skeleton of their structure is the base and corner posts on which the frame is placed. It is built according to transverse weights and load-bearing beams.

The floor and its durability are of great importance. It has to bear not only the full weight of the load, but also the stacker that loads the goods into the container. Both on the walls and the floor of the structure, there are holders with which the load is secured. This allows for its safe delivery to the destination.

The corner posts should be the most weight-resistant and stable part. They are the skeleton whose role is to lift the container upright. It is characteristic that sea containers are built in such a way that they have double doors. These doors also need to be raised by the corner posts. What is important is the fact that they are double and must be water resistant, which is especially important, for example, during a ship breakdown. As standard, the door is closed with approx. Four locks. The whole container is covered by the roof, which is usually the weakest element, as it remains load-free during transport.

Types of sea containers

There are several types of sea containers on the market, the construction of which depends on the type of goods they are intended for

1. Universal sea containers – intended for general use

It is a structure intended primarily for the transport of general cargo. They are also used for the transport of liquid and loose products after prior modification of their structure.

This type of cargo is transported in the so-called big begu, which fills the inside of the container structure, and its interior is pneumatic. A pneumatic device or a semi-trailer in the form of a container tipper is also necessary for unloading. On the other hand, liquid products are transported in containers called flexitanks. This type of transport is definitely cheaper than in traditional tanks.

2. Container with an open roof structure

Sea containers built with the open roof option are intended for weighing goods that go far beyond the height of the standard structure. Loaded from above, usually by crane. This method of loading also allows them to carry cargo that is difficult to put in a traditional container through the door. There are special mounting brackets on the floor and walls, and the permissible load is greater than in ordinary structures.

During transport, the roof with the transported goods is covered with a special tarpaulin. It is waterproof and has a rope with a customs seal.

There are also used containers with a movable roof, the so-called hard top. The door is equipped with a horizontal beam that allows the roof to be folded towards the inside of the container when the transported load requires it.

Open-top or movable-roof containers are treated as a specialist product and made to order. Many hauliers also use them to transport top-loaded bulk products. 

 3. Tanker

Sea containers built in the form of a cistern are adapted to the transport of liquids, including dangerous ones. They have all the necessary quality and safety standards. During transport, the container is only 80% full, which protects the load during possible sudden waves. The standard container capacity is 20,000 liters

4. Platform

Sea containers constructed in the form of a platform are used to transport large-size and heavy goods. Their load capacity is approx. 40 tons. The platform is built in such a way that the floor can withstand even high point pressures.

5. Containers – cold stores

They are designed to transport loads that require a specific temperature. What is characteristic of their construction is filling the walls of the container with polyurethane foam. Aluminum T-gretings act as air ducts ensuring proper air flow. When loading the cooler, it is important to maintain a gap ensuring air access. 

 The market is increasingly using a new type of containers with doors that open from both sides, which can also be opened and closed from the inside. This type of sea container construction allows to reduce the relocation of empty structures.

Producers emphasize that when using containers, special attention should be paid to their technical condition. This allows you to transport loads safely and efficiently. Therefore, proper maintenance and ongoing repair of any defects and faults resulting from use and depreciation are important.