Wednesday , 22 January 2020
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Baffles improve safety in tank containers

A newly commissioned report focusing on the anti-slosh performance of baffles in tank containers, published by ITCO (International Tank Container Organisation), shows that baffles will reduce sloshing and can improve safety.

The movement of liquid cargo within a tank when being transported is referred to as “sloshing”, with severe effects being caused by sudden changes, such as braking and cornering.

Commissioned from the Concaver Research Center at Concordia University in Montreal, Québec, Canada, the study looked at the surface area of baffles in order to determine the optimum dimension to be effective against sloshing, whilst also ensuring maximum aperture for safe entry into the tank for inspection and tests.

The study found:

  • Baffles provide a reduction in the transient slosh nature of the forces when compared to tanks without baffles
  • Baffles with between 50%-70% cross sectional surface areas of the tank provide similar performance
  • The effect is complex and is dependent on many factors, such as acceleration, product densities, fill levels, baffle area, etc.
  • The effect of longitudinal sloshing to sea and rail transport is substantially lower than might potentially occur by road transport

Commenting on the report, Heike Clausen, ITCO president, said: “By commissioning this report the ITCO has opened the discussion to engineers to provide the way forward to challenging norms and developing further optimum designs that ensure the tank container remains the safest mode of transport”.