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Slosh Characteristics of Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBCs)

Goal

To determine the slosh characteristics of IBCs with a combined capacity of up to 1,000 gallons through engineering modeling and road testing. An IBC can hold 119–884 gallons of liquid. The results from the engineering modeling and road testing will be used to determine if the slosh characteristics of IBCs aggregated to 1,000 gallons are similar to a single or compartmented cargo tank of the same capacity.

Background

In the final rule on commercial driver’s license (CDL) testing and commercial learner’s permit standards published on May 9, 2011, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) revised the definition of “tank vehicle” to include any commercial vehicle transporting tanks (to include IBCs) of liquids or gases with an aggregate of 1,000 gallons or more. The revision of the definition of “tank vehicle” implies that a person driving a commercial vehicle carrying an aggregate of 1,000 gallons or more of liquids or gases in IBCs must hold a CDL with a tank vehicle (N) endorsement. Previously, drivers of such vehicles were not subject to this requirement.

Summary

Engineering modeling and road testing were undertaken to ascertain whether the slosh characteristics of IBCs aggregated to 1,000 gallons or more are similar to a single or compartmented cargo tank of the same capacity. The results of this testing are being considered in determining whether there is a need to revise the existing rule on tank vehicle endorsements.

Outcomes

A final report that concludes whether the slosh characteristics of IBCs aggregated to 1,000 gallons or more are similar to the slosh characteristics of a single cargo tank of the same capacity.

Milestones

October 2014: Kick-off meeting
January 2015: Literature search completed
April 2015: Research plan reviewed by peer review panel
May 2015: Begin execution of research plan
November 2015: Begin road testing
March 2016: Peer review of draft final report

Funding

FY 2014: $341,865
FY 2015: $246,700

Current Status

Contractor

Battelle Memorial Institute
 
Updated: Friday, January 6, 2017
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