COMING INTO FOCUS: Millwood Launches Unit Load Testing Lab
National pallet company launches packaging lab dedicated to testing and developing the best unit load designs.
Date Posted: 3/1/2013
Looking to push the envelope in the technical analysis side of unit load technology, Millwood Inc. of Vienna, Ohio has built a state-of-the-art testing facility for packaging and unit loads. Headed by Ralph Rupert, the former director of the Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design at Virginia Tech, Millwood’s Unit Load Test & Design Lab was designed to conduct ISTA, ASTM and ISO compression, vibration and shock tests for transport packaging. The lab contains an incline impact tester, a hydraulic ram compression tester, a vibration tester and a fully integrated stretch film test system.
Millwood, a national pallet, packaging and materials handling company, offers the facility for its clients as a value-added service. It will also be available as an independent, fee-based resource for manufacturers who want to validate their unit load designs or to the pallet and packaging industries to test new packaging products and materials. “We want to be the premier test lab for the pallet and transport packaging industries,” said Rupert.
Offering confidentiality just like any other testing facility, the Millwood lab opened for business in January 2013. Rupert said, “One of the things that sets us apart from other general packaging labs out there is our expertise with unit loads, which requires testing the interaction between the packaging, shipping platform, load stabilizers and materials handling systems.”
Unit load and pallet design analysis allows Millwood to offer alternative designs that improve the packaging, prevent product damage and meet sustainability goals. The lab can also design, develop and test prototype pallets and corrugated packaging solutions.
“Millwood has been promoting the unit load concept for a number of years,” explained Rupert. “Now, we can put science behind our solutions.”
In addition to testing, Rupert plans to conduct research at the facility into areas such as corrugated compression and stretch film performance capabilities.
The Millwood lab joins the Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design at Virginia Tech and CHEP’s Innovation Center and Testing Lab as the third major facility dedicated to unit load testing in the United States. It will bring some competition to the marketplace. It is part of a trend as more pallet companies establish their own technical expertise.
Over the last few years, Millwood, The Nelson Company and Ongweoweh Corp. are among the pallet companies that have established technical divisions to further evaluate the science behind the packaging solutions that they offer. For more information, contact Millwood at http://www.millwoodinc.com or call Ralph Rupert at 330/393-4400.
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