Introduction To Unitised Cargo
Just as in the last article, this one, too, will deal with unit load devices that have been developed for loading on the aircraft main deck. These containers or devices cannot be loaded into the belly area because of the size and like most of the lower deck containers, they have contours. Aluminium is the material used in the manufacture, although new materials are being tested. AMJ 10 Ft container is a main deck loading device and is used on wide body aircraft ( MD-11, B747, B777). A tall and wide contoured container AMJ can be used for loading long and high freight. There are no doors and screens secured at the borders keep the contents safe.
Main Deck Construction
The article about AMH 10 Ft showed the construction of the main deck floor, especially the ball mat area. For easy reference the same images are being added here. The containers are guided along the prepared area to finally be arrested to their final position. They locked in position to prevent any form of movement during taxiing, take off or landing procedures.
Ball Mat Area : Courtesy and © Airbus
Shippers should, however, remember that although the containers are professionally loaded, the top of the freight will always register a higher moment (laws of physics). Hence, the contents are to be packaged to prevent any free movement.
Air Cargo Size And Packaging
Questions have been asked about when a freighter may be needed. As a rule of thumb consider any freight over 160 cm in height to be main deck freight. On wide body aircraft (airbus 300, or B747, B767, B777, MD11 etc.) , any freight above 160 cm will be considered as main deck category. Hence, to give you more flight possibilities, it is always better to limit your freight to a height of maximum 160 cm.
A freight of 300 cm may be considered oversize (Any freight over 400 cm is oversize) but the width and the height matter. Hence, always consult your freight forwarder, who can advise you about the possibilities. Although freight is flown in containers; in this article here, in AMJ 10 Ft; no cargo that is not packaged will be accepted.
Since containers are made of aluminium, consignments should not have sharp edges. Unit Load Devices that show a certain amount of damage are not permitted to be used in air freight
AMH 10 Ft Container (Main Deck Loding Only)
- IATA Specification : AMJ 10 Ft contour container
- Maximum Load Volume : approx. 16.5 cbm (cubic meters)
- Maximum Weight Tolerance (tie-down slots):907 Kg
- Maximum Payload : 6804 Kg
- Inner Dimension : Length 306 cm x Width 230 cm x Height 240 cm
- Aircraft : (wide body) MD-11F, B747F, B777F
Advice To Exporters
- Strong and wear resistant packaging. Protection against manipulation is mandatory for all air cargo
- Please use card board pallets to organise your freight. Wooden pallets increase weight!
- Make sure that there is no overhang on pallets. This will avoid increasing the used volume.
- Inner packaging to be secured tightly and all openings to be sealed. Please inform the freight forwarder about any special handling requirements (remember to affix the required labels such as FRAGILE, DO NOT THROW etc. If the consignment is valuable cargo, your freight forwarder will inform you of any special packaging needs.
- It is the freight forwarder’s decision whether to use a container or not.
- Optimising the cargo will be done either by the airline or by the freight forwarder. Various factors will determine the decision-making. Unitised Cargo is a point to be thought of, when you have a lot of freight packaged in cartons and especially when you have regular shipments.
- The details given here are only to give you an idea of unitised cargo. You must consult your air cargo agent to find the best possible solution
Anybody needing help or advice to plan air freight Please get in touch using the contact form. However, consultation with your freight forwarder /air cargo agent cannot be stressed enough.
Experts in the field: please point out any errors or changes. A feedback from readers will be highly appreciated. Please share your thoughts by commenting. Any recommendation on bettering the content is welcome and will be highly appreciated.
A330F Main Deck Loading Procedure: Courtesy poor student for the video
References to Air freight and Unitised Cargo
Tracking online and by e-mail, news, events, reservation system and FAQ. Information on the fleet and unit load devices.