339. World-Wide Survey of Cargo Densities


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C A Hangoe: 339. World-Wide Survey of Cargo Densities. 1962.



This paper was presented at the Twenty-first Annual National Conference of the Society of Aeronautical Weight Engineers at Seattle, Washington, May 14-17, 1962. During the SAWE 1961 Conference in Akron several airlines delegates suggested that the subject of a ‘World-Wide Survey of Cargo Densities’ be taken under consideration by the 1961-1962 Airline Working Committee for a programmed topic and for presentation at the SAWE 1962 Conference in Seattle.
The author of this paper was subsequently asked to undertake such a survey and if possible, to have a paper prepared for presentation. At that time it was realized that the magnitude of such a survey and the processing of the data might prevent the presentation of a representative and meaningful account at this conference. Further, little was it realized that all but a few airlines had anything at all to offer in response to an invitation to participate in this project.
The optimistic assumption we can make here is that the lack of response was not due to the absence of interest but rather to the availability of worthwhile survey material. No doubt, comprehensive airline surveys exist but the vintage of the data might void their value for our purpose.
The airline industry is today facing a critical time in its history mainly brought about by the introduction of the jet transport aircraft and airlines so involved are therefore facing diminishing revenues, higher costs and possible deficits. They are suffering under lowering passenger load factors and increasing overcapacity of unutilized weight carrying ability. On the other hand, the demand on the industry for the transportation of cargo or freight is on the increase. In the light of these conditions, it stands to reason that financial gains can be achieved by taking more advantage of the market potential of the freight business. However, to do so demands knowledge of freight type characteristics over the routes to be considered and the airline ability to provide suitable aircraft accommodation. One of the most important measurements involved in the marriage of aircraft accommodation and cargo, for transport, is the yardstick of ‘Cargo Density’. Cargo densities may vary on route by terminals, by days and by weeks or by seasons. Without some knowledge of the behavior of these cargo densities, one is not in a very good position to do efficient planning on the spot or, for that matter, in regard to future aircraft evaluation and its associated cargo hold requirement both weight and volume-wise.


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