More volume thanks to SeaCell & RollerForks®


GE SeaCo is the world’s largest container lessor, with a fleet of almost 1 million TEU (Twenty feet Equivalent Unit), and offers the widest range of container equipment in the industry. The company’s modern fleet offers the widest range of standard and specialised marine containers available for hire anywhere in the world. It includes refrigerated containers, tank containers, swapbodies, flatracks, standard box containers and the revolutionary palletwide SeaCell – a truly intermodal container.

The cell guides of container ships a built to carry ISO (8ft wide) containers, are too narrow to accept 2.5 m ‘palletwide’ containers. The internal width of standard ISO containers is less than 2360 mm, a size which does not suit most pallet sizes. Shipper groups and forwarders needed a universal palletwide container that could be used shortsea, deep sea and intermodally across land. The industry wanted this container to be available at an affordable price. Both of these issues were successfully resolved with invention of the SeaCell container.

The SeaCell is similar in most respects to a standard container allowing it to be manufactured in conventional factories using mass production methods. The key difference is in the sidewall and door post construction. SeaCell’s sidewall corrugations extend outside the 8ft width normal, but have an asymmetrical design which allows SeaCells to sit next to other SeaCells or standard containers on standard ships. SeaCells internal width of 2426 mm allows for the snug fit of all 1200 mm wide pallets and slip sheets as the table below shows.

In particular slipsheets offer exporters an inexpensive way to unitise their cargos. Compared to wooden pallets, for every 40ft container loaded there is:

  • A 5% reduction in weight (1500 kilos).
  • A 13% increase in useable cube (9 cubic metres).

For sometime the capital cost of a dedicated fork truck to handle slip sheeted loads at both loading and unloading prevented the switch from pallets, to slip sheets. Thanks to RollerForks this is no longer the case and we are bound to see a huge growth of slip sheeted exports.

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