Tank container construction is governed by exacting industry standards. For decades, tank containers have been manufactured from austenitic stainless steels. But when maintenance and replacement costs became exorbitant, a global tank container operator based in Holland demanded an alternative.
The result? A stunning debut by Outokumpu Forta DX 2205. Construction of 25 European intermodal swap body tank containers from Forta DX 2205 represents the first major use of that duplex stainless steel in this application, the first use of Outokumpu’s 2E finish in this application, the first time the manufacturer has used Forta DX 2205 and the first time the tank container operator – in business for more than 40 years – has adopted an alternative stainless steel.
Technical expertise makes the difference
It takes confidence to make a leap like that. “Outokumpu, as one of key pioneers of duplex steel, has played a key role in moving this initiative forward,” says Brent Cohen, Technical and Development Manager for CIMC Tank, the world’s leading global tank manufacturer. “Outokumpu’s assistance with technical expertise has been invaluable.”
After learning of the challenge faced by the tank container operator, Outokumpu conducted a thorough technical analysis of alternative materials and reviewed those with CIMC. Once Forta DX 2205 was selected, Outokumpu conducted a one-day training seminar for CIMC production engineers.
To achieve the corrosion resistance duplex stainless steel is known for, the material’s mechanical properties must be precisely maintained during forming and fabrication. “Outokumpu gave us the technical support we need to ensure that we produce products that perform as intended,” Cohen says.
Lower costs for the long haul
Outokumpu DX 2205 offers excellent corrosion resistance (with pitting and crevice corrosion resistance superior to that offered by 316L) and high resistance to stress corrosion cracking. It’s also known for good workability and weldability.
The tank containers’ cold-rolled 2E surface finish is smooth, uniform and has high cleanability. Because tank containers are cleaned after nearly every use, the latter is a particularly important point. A tank container that shakes off corrosion requires less maintenance – and that translates into lower lifetime costs.