Vertical Compression Package Integrity and Transportation Testing
What is Vertical Compression Testing?
Vertical compression integrity testing specifies the resistance of a packaging to complete, filled transport packages. This package test method is also used to assess the performance of a package in terms of the protection it offers to its contents when it is subjected to a compressive force.
Vertical compression testing is performed in one of two ways. First, vertical compressing testing can be conducted as a single integrity test to examine the effects of compression or stacking. Second, the test may be a part of a sequence to measure the ability of a package to the distribution system.
As an ISTA and ISO 17025 certified lab, Keystone realizes the importance of vertical compression integrity testing. Meeting the compression compliance requirements can be difficult. We understand the challenges and guide companies through the process.
When packages do not meet the requirements, our engineers assist with finding solutions. Keystone Package Testing partners with customers to achieve package compliance.
Why is Vertical Compression Compliance Testing Important?
Vertical compression testing allows for the assessment of pallets’ load-bearing capacity, ensuring they can withstand the forces exerted upon them without compromising safety. By subjecting pallets to controlled and standardized vertical compression tests, potential weaknesses or design flaws can be identified early on, reducing the risk of pallet failure during transportation.
In addition, vertical compression testing aids in optimizing package and pallet design, enabling manufacturers to create pallets that can withstand high vertical loads while minimizing their own weight. Conducting compression testing determines the maximum load capacity of a pallet, ensuring that it can be efficiently utilized to transport goods without overloading or wasting valuable space.
On the other hand, the benefits of testing a package’s ability to withstand the transportation cycle may include:
- Balanced distribution costs
- Confidence in product launch
- Increased customer satisfaction and a growing market share
- Product to market time reduction
Moreover, by prolonging the lifespan of pallets through reliable testing, the industry can reduce waste and contribute to sustainability efforts.
Vertical Compression Integrity Test Procedures
Depending on the test being performed, the package is either conditioned with ASTM D4332: Conditioning of Containers, Packages, or Packaging Components or ISO 2233: Complete, filled transport Packages and Unit Loads – Conditioning for Testing.
Next, samples are chosen to accurately represent a portion of the units manufactured.
The vertical compression test is completed by either using a vertical compression machine in compliance with ASTM D642: Determining Compressive Resistance of Shipping Containers, Components and Unit Loads, or weights and a load spreader.
The vertical compression test is carried out by positioning the product in its intended shipping orientation. If a load spreader is used, it must be larger than the top face of the test item and should be sufficiently rigid to apply a uniform compression force. Regardless of the method, if the test item is shipped on a pallet, testing is completed with an identical pallet on top.
The platens of the compression test machine are brought together until the test item is contacted. Constant force is applied until it reaches the appropriate value for the product. The compression is held for one hour and then released.
After the vertical compression tests have been completed, a report is written with the following information.
- Description of contents and inside dimensions
- Description and specification of materials, i.e. style of container, access holes, and double scores
- Spacing, size, and type of fasteners and method of closure
- Detailed results for each test specimen
Keystone Package Testing’s Compression Test Equipment and Capabilities
Keystone’s laboratory includes multiple compression testers and shakers up to 12 kips. Also, our test machines are capable of performing precise drops from different heights and angles.
We utilize more than two dozen climatic chambers with sizes ranging from reach-in to large walk-in chambers up to 1,300 cubic feet. These thermal chambers can accommodate up to entire vehicles and substantial pieces of equipment.
Keystone Package Testing owns all the equipment needed to perform professional package integrity testing. Our professional engineers offer the peace of mind that all your package testing needs are met under one roof. We can test flexible and rigid packages of all sizes.
Expert Regulatory Compliance Test Laboratory
Keystone has a full lab of test equipment which permits us to provide short lead times on scheduling. Our team strives to give our customers more time and energy on product development instead of testing. In addition to horizontal compression testing, Keystone has a full scope of expertise including burst strength, tip over, and vibration integrity testing.
Contact us to learn first hand why so many companies partner with Keystone to achieve their vertical compression certification needs. Request a quote to receive testing services customized to your specific needs.