After around 120,000 trial runs on Lufthansa flights and six months of materials tests with the "Süddeutsches Kunststoffzentrum Würzburg", Lufthansa Cargo and Jettainer have successfully concluded a pilot scheme on the use of lightweight containers. During the test series, a total of 1,000 of the new-type composite containers were trialled in the global route networks of Lufthansa and Lufthansa Cargo. Construction of the containers from innovative and lighter composites instead of aluminium reduces their weight by 20 per cent, lowering fuel burn and CO2 emissions appreciably. The new containers are made of glass fiber, Kevlar fiber or Dyneema® sourced from different manufacturers.
"Lufthansa Cargo stands by its ecological commitment. By 2020, we aim to reduce our specific fuel consumption by 25 per cent," emphasised Lufthansa Cargo Chairman Carsten Spohr. "The successful tests with lightweight containers constitute a significant step in that direction."
"The successful deployment of lightweight containers represents a paradigm change", observed Jettainer Managing Director Alexander Plümacher. "Their innovative design with lighter materials for transport of freight and baggage will not only save costs for our customers but, simultaneously, reduce emissions considerably. That will make aviation become a little greener."
The container tests were designed to transform an innovative idea into an industry standard. Another object of the trials was also to assess the handling quality characteristics and costs of lightweight containers.