ULD terminology

Terms and definitions which are commonly used in the ULD industry.

AIRCRAFT CONTAINER
Completely enclosed unit load device which interfaces directly with the aircraft cargo handling and restraint system and alone performs all the functions of a unit load device


AIRCRAFT PALLET
Unit load device consisting of a flat platform with flat under-surface of standard dimensions, on which cargo is assembled and secured before being loaded as a unit on to the aircraft, and which interfaces directly with the aircraft handling and restraint system


AIRCRAFT PALLET NET
Webbing or rope net used for restraining load onto an aircraft pallet


AIRCRAFT UNIT LOAD DEVICE (ULD)
Assembly of components com-prising either an aircraft pallet and pallet net, or an aircraft container

NOTE – The purpose of the unit is to enable individual pieces of cargo to be assembled into a standard-sized unit to facilitate rapid loading and unloading of aircraft having compatible handling and restraint systems which interface directly with the unit.


AIRWORTHINESS APPROVAL
Approval process resulting in a certification document delivered by a Civil Aviation authority to certify that an item complies with all airworthiness requirements related to its use on board civil transport aircraft, as laid down by the regulatory authorities for the country in which the aircraft is registered and on which the item is to be used


AIRWORTHY
Condition of a certified unit load device presenting no damage exceeding the allowable limits specified at certification


CARGO LOADING SYSTEM (CLS)
Equipment installed in the floor of an aircraft cargo compartment to restrain aircraft unit load devices against the ground/flight loads. It usually consists of such items as rollers, side guides and locks for securing unit load devices to the aircraft structure. It does not include unit load devices, barrier and tie-down straps.


CERTIFICATION (APPROVAL)
Approval by an airworthiness authority that a component or item of equipment meets the required performance for aircraft installation


CERTIFIED (APPROVED)
Item of equipment approved by an airworthiness authority for installation aboard an aircraft


INTERCHANGE
Transfer between, or use on, different types of aircraft, whether operated by the same carrier or by different carriers


INTERLINE
Transfer from one air carrier to another, whether the same or a different aircraft types are used


INTERMODAL
Carriage of goods in more than one mode of transport, i.e. rail, truck, sea and air, in the same container


NON-AIRWORTHY
Condition of a certified unit load device presenting one or more damage(s) exceeding allowable limits specified at certification


NON-CERTIFIED CONTAINER
Container exclusively for the lower deck of aircraft, which is not subject to airworthiness approval ("certification"), but may be carried under conditions specified by the aircraft's Weight and Balance Manual


SUPPLEMENTAL TYPE CERTIFICATE (STC)
Certification by an airworthiness authority that a modification, device or installation is allowable on board a given aircraft type, for which an original type certificate was already delivered


TECHNICAL STANDARD ORDER
A means of compliance for certification of a device for use on board civil transport aircraft, independent of the aircraft type.


TYPE CERTIFICATE
Original airworthiness authorities approval of a given aircraft type or sub-type for use in public civil transport, in reference to which any applicable STCs are delivered


UNIT LOAD DEVICE (ULD)
Device for grouping, transferring and restraining cargo for transit. It may consist of a pallet with a net or it may be a container


WEIGHT AND BALANCE MANUAL (W&BM)
Manual published for each aircraft type by its manufacturer, which is approved by the airworthiness authority as part of the aircraft type's certification, and defines the set of limits not to be exceeded by the operating carrier when loading

(Source: IATA ULD Regulations)