Trailer Magazine - April 2019 - Omni Tanker - ISO Tank TM0419

Going global with Australian innovation

THE COMPELLING COMBINATION OF HIGHER RETURNS WITH ENHANCED SAFETY HAS PROVIDED THE PLATFORM FOR SYDNEY BASED INNOVATOR, OMNI TANKER, TO LAUNCH THE OMNITAINER – THE WORLD’S FIRST CARBON FIBRE COMPOSITE ISO TANK CONTAINER – INTO THE GLOBAL MARKET, IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TANK CONTAINER LEASING POWERHOUSE, EUROTAINER.

In late 2018, Omni Tanker and Eurotainer finalised a global supply agreement with the launch of the OmniTAINER in Houston, Texas, to the major chemical producers and transport companies in the US. The export of tank containers from Omni Tanker’s plant in southwestern Sydney has now commenced, with the first units heading to the US and Europe earlier this year.

Over the past decade, Omni Tanker’s ground-breaking composite technology has been widely deployed in the Australian road tanker market where it is used by the major chemical transporters for aggressive Class 8 corrosive cargoes. With a track record of strong performance in Australia, the company focused its R&D efforts on the development of the OmniTAINER for the global tank container market.

Introducing a new product to a traditional marketplace comes with its challenges, however, Omni Tanker CEO, Daniel Rodgers, senses the global market is primed for change.

“Globally we are seeing significant growth in both the number of tank container transporters, and the number of tanks being brought to market,” he says. “Operators are under pressure to find new ways to improve safety and drive profitability.”

In the tank container industry, steel tanks are the norm, and the adoption of advanced polymer composite materials from the aerospace industry, such as carbon fibre, is in its early stages.

Omni Tanker is leading the charge in this respect with aerospace engineer, Dr Luke Djukic, heading up Omni Tanker’s engineering department. “It is exciting to be at the forefront of this process,” he says. “We are engaged with international regulatory bodies and are also privileged to be part of the United Nations working group of the Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, developing the recommendations for fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP) portable tanks.”

The high strength to weight ratio of carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) material has been applied by Omni Tanker to create a lightweight tank container suitable for pressure applications. The mass of the tank itself is around half that of a steel tank and provides significantly higher safety factors. The resulting payload increase provides compelling economic and environmental benefits to transporters via reduced costs and emissions.

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