After a development and test phase of over a year Move Intermodal invests in 160 brand new ultra-light 45ft swap bodies. A total investment of almost 3 mln EUR. Together with our partner Wecon a weight saving of almost 1 ton has been realized. All units will be operational before the summer of 2017.
From a cost- and environmental perspective Move Intermodal believes swap bodies are the preferred solution over crane-able trailers, because the linehaul by train can be optimized. Just as with a truck, the total length and weight of a train is limited. By reducing the tare weight of the load unit more cargo can be transported at the same costs. Leading to reduced carbon emissions and a potential increased modal shift. Thus contributing to Europe’s transport and sustainability goals that has resulted in the nomination of this project for the RailTech 2017 Innovation Award.
Realizing a higher payload
The weight of curtain side swap bodies has been optimized in the past years, but for the construction of the unit decades-old techniques are used. By fully analyzing the previous generation swap body components were found which could be left out, or alternatively designed for weight optimization.
Governing bodies have to approve a new unit before it can be used in rail transport. One of the most important criteria is the bending of the unit under 1,5 times the maximum permitted load weight. Advanced computer simulations revealed the places in the construction with useless strength reserves. This resulted in the redesigning of heavy steel beams based on actual force lines and the use of alternative construction materials, like plastics and new side tilts. Remarkable are the more than 1.000 holes that were incorporated in the structure. A weight reduction of 15% was realized, without the strength of the unit being affected.
Therefore the new ultra-light swap body can load up to 1 ton of extra cargo, taking full advantage of intermodal regulations and being competitive with road and crane-able trailers.
Competitive and environmental friendly: reducing costs and carbon footprint
The creativity leading to this innovation and resulting in more sustainable transport is incorporated into Move Intermodals core values. Luc Driessen, CEO Move Intermodal: “We strive for practical innovations to support our customers in their continuous efforts to optimize their costs and carbon footprint.” The new swap body results in a 4-6% cost saving for shippers already using combined transport. When shifting cargo from single-mode road transport to an intermodal solution with this ultra light swap body the saving could lead to 16-20% cost saving on shipper’s transport costs.
Moreover for all volumes transported by Move Intermodal potentially half a million kilo of CO2 can be saved year over year.
Nomination RailTech 2017 Innovation Award
The incredible results of this next generation swap body have resulted in a nomination for the RailTech 2017 Innovation Award in the category Rail Cargo. The award ceremony will take place on March 28th during the RailTech Europe fair in Utrecht (NL). The pitch event is freely accessible for all visitors of the fair. You can help us to win the public innovation award. Voting is now open!