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Shipping Container Sizes

What are Shipping Containers?

According to the International Standards Organization (ISO), shipping containers are also known as ISO containers, conex boxes, intermodal containers, etc. ISO standard containers are designed to allow for intermodal transportation, which is the transfer of a container from one mode of transportation to another, such as ship, rail, or truck, without the need to load and unload and reload its contents.

Shipping containers are strong enough to withstand the transportation, storage, and handling of containers. They are used to protect the transported goods from shocks and adverse weather conditions and to keep the stored products intact. They were first used in the 1950s and were originally developed for commercial container transport, which revolutionized shipping and global trade.

Why are Shipping Containers Important?

In the 1950s, American businessman Malcolm McLean realized that by standardizing the sizes of the containers used in international trade, the loading and unloading of ships and trains could be at least largely automated, resulting in a seamless transition from one form of transportation to another. As a result, the development of the container offers lower transportation costs, easier storage, and easier international transportation cooperation across diverse logistics firms and nations. In brief, shipping containers enable the storage and multimodal transit of cargo on automobiles, trains, and ships. They are frequently used to move heavy or bulky goods that are stored on pallets.

In 1968, the International Standards Organization standardized the creation as a standard box. It was discovered that the box measured 20 ft long, 8 ft high, and 8 ft broad. The size of the typical container in use today is 20 ft long, 8 ft wide, and 9 ft tall.

Shipping Container Sizes

There are many sizes and types of containers. In terms of shipping container categories, there are high cube, open top, refrigerated, Stora Enso Cargo Unit (SECU), car carrier, pallet-wide and flat rack containers. In addition, the size of a shipping container can be 8 ft, 20 ft, 40 ft, etc.

Here is an introduction to the most common sizes (20ft and 40ft) of shipping containers.

20ft Shipping General Purpose Containers

the outer dimensions in meters is 6.1M × 2.44M × 2.89M and the internal dimensions in meters is 5.69M × 2.13M × 2.18M.

The 20ft shipping container is the best known and most commonly used, especially for intermodal transport, as it can be easily moved between different modes of transport without the need to repack the cargo. In addition, it is often used to transport large machinery as well as raw materials such as rock and iron ore.

40ft Shipping Containers

General Purpose Containers

The outer dimensions in meters are 12.2M x 2.44M x 2.59M and the internal dimension in meters is 11.8M×2.13M×2.72M.

The 40ft shipping container's greatest asset is its storage capacity, which makes it perfect for transporting heavy machineries and bulky objects like construction and mining equipment (without the need to disassemble offices) across the ocean or on public roadways. 40ft containers can be also used as effective storage for supplies, inventory, and big pieces of equipment.

Bathroom equipment and materials for home and office improvement make up its particular market. To combat the issue of expensive real estate, 40ft shipping containers can be transformed into movable workplaces and houses thanks to the space and security they provide.

Open-Top Containers

Open-top containers often have interior sides made of corrugated steel.The floor is constructed of wood and is ideal for loads that are too heavy or too long to be handled by a forklift, especially fragile heavy goods such as glass plates as a crane can lower very large loads into the container from the top.

Neptune Logistics - The Best Choice for Shipping Containers

For 19 years, Neptune Logistics has operated many intermodal equipment projects with a professional team and rich experience. We also provide multiple choices of container leasing service. Neptune has global fleet of intermodal equipment, we will provide you with and develop the most perfect solution according to your cargo and requirements. If you want to know more about shipping containers, Feel free to contact us!

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