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Thermal Performance of Corrugated Plastic Boxes and Expanded Polystyrene Boxes

Author(s):

Björn Margeirsson, Sigurjón Arason, Halldór Pálsson

Funded by:

EU‐project Chill on (project no. FP6‐016333‐2), AVS Research Fund, TÞS Research Fund and University of Iceland Research Fund

Contact

Sigurjón Arason

Head Engineer

sigurjon.arason@matis.is

Thermal Performance of Corrugated Plastic Boxes and Expanded Polystyrene Boxes

Tilraunir voru gerðar á einangrunargildi tvenns konar pakkninga fyrir fersk fiskflök: 1) Bylgjuplastkassa (CP) og 2) Frauðplastkassa (EPS). Breytilegu hitastigi umhverfis pakkningarnar var stýrt í tilraunakæliklefum og fylgst með hitaþróun utan og innan pakkninga með hitasíritum. Bæði stakir kassar og heil bretti af kössum voru rannsökuð sem og kæligeta ísmotta, sem stundum eru settar efst í kassa fyrir flutning frá framleiðanda til kaupanda. Kælimotturnar (ísmotturnar) reyndust afar áhrifaríkar til að verja fiskflökin fyrir hitaálagi. Jafnframt sýndu niðurstöður fram á yfirburði varmaeinangrunar frauðplastkassa umfram bylgjuplastkassa óháð notkun kælimotta. Mismunur einangrunargildis er reyndar enn sýnilegri þegar kælimottur eru notaðar.   Tilraunir með fullstaflað bretti af fiskikössum (u.þ.b. 300 kg á bretti) sýndu að meðalhitahækkun flaka getur verið tvöföld fyrir bylgjuplastkassa m.v. frauðplastkassa, að því gefnu að loftið umhverfis sé 10 °C heitt og á töluverðri hreyfingu. Að lokum var sýnt fram á að nokkurra klst. sveiflur í lofthita umhverfis heil fiskibretti geta valdið mjög ójafnri hitadreifingu innan stæðunnar á brettinu.  

Experiments were carried out to compare the thermal performance of two different types of packaging for fresh fish fillets: 1) Corrugated plastic (CP) and 2) Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) boxes. The boxes containing fresh fillets were affected with dynamic thermal loads in air climate chambers. Meanwhile, the fillet temperature was monitored with temperature loggers. Both free standing boxes and whole pallets were affected with dynamic thermal loads in the study and the chilling effect of frozen cooling mats was studied by using them in some of the boxes.    The frozen cooling mats proved very efficient for protecting fresh fish fillets against temperature abuse.  Furthermore, the results show that the insulating performance of EPS is significantly better than of CP, independent of the usage of cooling mats. The difference in insulating performance between the two packaging types is actually exaggerated when cooling mats are used. The experiments with whole pallets revealed that the mean fillet temperature rise for a whole 300 kg fish pallet can be twofold using CP compared to using EPS, given that the movement of surrounding air is considerable and its temperature is 10 °C. Finally, it was shown that in dynamic temperature conditions, the temperature distribution in a whole pallet of fish fillets can be far from homogeneous.

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