Pipeline's engineers can help ensure the performance of your packaging – from structural testing and analysis to Six Sigma process streamlining and final deployment – in a variety of ways.
Packaging Testing and Development Recommendations
Pipeline's packaging engineers can assist with evaluating your packaging with the goal to help you confirm packaging specifications as well as improve its effectiveness, safety, versatility. Whether evaluating a container's effectiveness or providing a preliminary performance appraisal per Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations, our engineering team can conduct the following tests as part of their analysis:
§178.603 Drop Test
Tests the ability of a package to contain and protect hazardous materials if dropped.
§178.604 Leak Proof Test
Tests the ability of package to prevent leakage under conditions of normal transport
§178.605 Hydrostatic Pressure
Tests the ability of the package to prevent leakage of liquids under pressure.
§178.606 Stack Test
Tests the ability of the package to maintain stability while stacked with similar type packages.
§178.608 Vibration Standard
Tests the ability of the package to withstand vibrations encountered during shipment. *Vibration standard is only required for initial design qualification testing.
(Thanks to our manufacturing division, Cleveland Steel Container, for providing the test demonstration videos.)
* PLEASE NOTE: Pipeline Packaging does not certify UN standards with its testing. We can, however, analyze your packaging for any concerns and provide a "pre-check" prior to paying for valid UN certification testing.
3D Printing for Packaging Analysis
A customer who purchases pump sprayers from us for years suddenly began experiencing issues. After pressing down, the pumps weren’t releasing fully preventing a hard seal. The result: dripping pumps.
A conversation with the manufacturer revealed they were providing the same pumps as always with no alternations. No other customer had reported leaking. They were at a loss to explain why the leaking was happening.
Pipeline’s engineers scanned the pump and 3D printed it three times larger than its normal size. Examining a cutout of the larger model revealed some inner surfaces appeared worn away. Perhaps the molds used to produce the plastic parts were starting to wear down with time and use.
The manufacturer carefully inspected the mold used for this project. Our assumption was correct; wear and tear had just started to set in. Further, this mold had only been used on our customer’s project, explaining why no one else had issues with their pumps.
While new pumps had already been produced from a different mold for the customer, the reason for the dripping had been discovered and reported. The older mold was retired so the leaking issue would not be a factor in the future.
Lean Six Sigma Evaluation and Process Improvement
Our engineering team can also assess broader manufacturing processes with an eye to improve efficiencies and reduce costs. Two of the most common services we are called on to provide are:
Equipment/Process Flow/Automation Evaluation
Pipeline Packaging can look at your manufacturing, staging and delivery processes for streamlining and safety opportunities. From rearranging the layout of a production area through introducing robotics to automate activities that can lead to injury, Pipeline can help in ways for beyond sourcing your packaging.
Freight optimization - allowing you to save truck space and money - can be done through a couple strategies, both available through our engineering team. We can perform Vibration and Stack tests (mentioned above) to help ensure your packaging can withstand travel rigors. We can also run programs to ensure that your product is being palletized and the trucks loaded to your maximum benefit, ensuring the best use of space, time and money.