Industrial context

The biggest market interest is in a 45 ft MSB with the highest possible (at least 2.97 m) inside height and total vehicle height limited to 4.00 m. A 45 ft box maximizes the volume and the adaptation of the latest 96/53/EC directive makes transporting a 45 ft container by road easily possible. The 45 ft box will give the best performance in terms of CO2 burden per m³ payload.

A 45 ft MSB for road transport is well accepted. Regarding overseas transport it remains an abnormality. On container ships the 45 ft container has to be placed on special places on the upper deck. Regarding rail intercontinental transportation the use of 45 ft containers has to be differentiated between West Europe and the Eastern area (starting with Belarus, Ukraine, Russia etc.). In Western Europe there are substantial numbers of wagons able to carry two 45 ft containers up to a C45/C75 codification. In the Eastern area the most railway wagons are not suitable for 45 ft containers since the majority of the wagons are 80 ft, i.e. they are able to carry two 40 ft containers or only one 45 ft container so that too much air is transported, meaning too much idle space.

The success of the whole system solution will depend on the optimization between possible poayload (low vehicle weight), price and feasible features such as openable sides, stacking and container handling. At least 24 ton payload is requested in order to present an appealing business model. Beside of this, the handling processes (loading and unloading) and the maneuverability of the new loading unit should be easy, otherwise transport  companies will fall back on other solutions that already exist or which are in development.

All this ideal or optimal requirements for the new MSB, low deck tractor and chassis have always to comply with the current legislations for intermodal transport in the EU. Thus, it is a challenge to achieve all these requirements in terms of construction, normative and economic efficiency. Therefore, a compromise between the ideal requirements must be performed.