saewhan on stability tester
saewhan on stability tester

Virginia Tech's packaging program and Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design (CPULD) proudly announces the acquisition of state-of-the-art unit load stability equipment, further solidifying its position as a leader in packaging education and research. The Lansmont Trumotion Stability Sled marks a significant expansion of the program's capabilities, providing unique opportunities for research, education, and industry collaboration.

Eric Joneson, VP of Technology at Lansmont, said that “Research, science, and data-based decision making is baked into our DNA and we have a long history of supporting research efforts across the globe. We continue to support university research wherever we can – all in the pursuit of improved knowledge and testing methodologies.”

This innovative equipment enables the simulation of truck braking and turning events during over-the-road transportation, allowing researchers and students to design stable unit loads effectively. What sets CPULD apart is that it is now one of the only academic institutions in the United States with this exceptional capability.

Over half a million large truck accidents occurred in the U.S. in 2023, resulting in over 100,000 injuries and 4,000 lives lost. Among the significant factors contributing to these accidents is the improper stabilization of cargo in trailers which pose a serious threat. To address this issue, CPULD, in collaboration with Lansmont Corporation, is pioneering the development of a new stability testing standard.

While human error remains a primary cause of truck accidents, the improper securing of cargo, especially in loads exceeding 40,000 pounds, can lead to dangerous shifts that result in trailer overturns. Recognizing the importance of cargo stabilization, the European Union introduced Directive 2014/47/EU, leading to the creation of the EUMOS 40509 stability testing standard.

In an effort to enhance trucking safety in the United States, CPULD is actively engaged in the review of EU requirements and the development of a U.S. stability standard. The introduction of the Lansmont stability testing sled places CPULD, and Virginia Tech, at the forefront of this crucial endeavor.

Saewhan Kim, a PhD student at Virginia Tech, is spearheading research to characterize shock events during trailer transportation, specifically during braking and turning maneuvers. Kim's goal is to devise a laboratory testing sequence that accurately simulates these events, contributing to the establishment of stability standards.

Recognizing the current emphasis on sustainability in the packaging industry, Kim's research extends to evaluating a novel theory. This theory leverages the horizontal stiffness of a unit load to predict its ability to withstand the rigors of distribution. By optimizing the use of plastic films to stabilize unit loads, packaging engineers can create safer and more sustainable transport solutions.

The Lansmont Trumotion equipment is not confined to research endeavors; it is also integrated into education at Virginia Tech. Both graduate and undergraduate students will gain hands-on experience, learning how to design safe and stable unit loads. This practical application of knowledge ensures that students are well-prepared for challenges in the packaging industry.

"This new capability will provide invaluable hands-on experience to our graduate and undergraduate students related to load stability and will allow them to help packaging companies to ship safe and stable unit loads." Dr. Laszlo Horvath

The benefits of the availability of this cutting-edge equipment even extends beyond the university campus. Industry professionals can leverage the equipment through Virginia Tech's Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design (CPULD), fostering collaboration between academia and industry to address real-world packaging challenges.

Virginia Tech and CPULD are dedicated to advancing packaging education, research, and industry practices. The addition of the Lansmont Trumotion unit load stability equipment underscores the university's commitment to staying at the forefront of innovation in the field of packaging. CPULD also looks forward to contributing to the development of a comprehensive stability testing standard in collaboration with industry stakeholders.

saewhan on stability tester