ISO 6346 is an international standard covering the coding, identification and marking of intermodal (shipping) containers used within containerized intermodal freight transport. The standard establishes a visual identification system for every container that includes a unique serial number (with check digit), the owner, a country code, a size, type and equipment category as well as any operational marks. The standard is managed by the International Container Bureau (BIC).
|Freight containers -- Coding, identification and marking|
|Organization||International Organization for Standardization|
Example of an ISO 6346 compliant container number:
The owner code consists of three capital letters of the Latin alphabet to indicate the owner or principal operator of the container. Such code needs to be registered at the Bureau International des Conteneurs in Paris to ensure uniqueness worldwide. An owner can apply for more than one code, as normally the first 2 letters are used as the owner code and the third is used to indicate pool (e.g. HLA, HLB, HLX are some Hapag-Lloyd codes to indicate whether container is standard, reefer...)
The equipment category identifier consists of one of the following capital letters of the Latin alphabet:
Presently, all official BIC container codes end in “U”. However, the Association of American Railroads recognizes similar codes for their containers and trailers traveling by rail in North America, however these are not recognized by the BIC and lack check digits.
Under the ISO code, then, only U, J, and Z are in use. The refrigerated (reefer) container is identified by means of the size type code.
The serial number consists of 6 numeric digits, assigned by the owner or operator, uniquely identifying the container within that owner/operator's fleet.
The check digit consists of one numeric digit providing a means of validating the recording and transmission accuracies of the owner code and serial number.
To compute the check digit, the letters have to be converted to numbers. This is done in three steps:
An equivalent numerical value is assigned to each letter of the alphabet, beginning with 10 for the letter A (11 and multiples thereof are omitted):
The individual digits of the serial number keep their numeric value.
Each of the numbers calculated in step 1 is multiplied by 2position, where position is the exponent to base 2. Position starts at 0, from left to right.
The following table shows the multiplication factors:
|1. nbr||2. nbr||3. nbr||4. nbr||5. nbr||6. nbr||7. nbr||8. nbr||9. nbr||10. nbr|
If the final difference is 10, then the check digit becomes 0. To ensure that this does not happen, the standard recommends that serial numbers should not be used which produce a final difference of 10; however, there are containers in the market which do not follow this recommendation, so handling this case has to be included if a check digit calculator is programmed.
Notice that step (ii) to (v) is a calculation of the remainder found after division of (i) by 11. Most programming languages have a modulo operator for this. Attention should be paid on how it is working in the language chosen; i. e. if it is giving back the decimal rest or the integer rest in order to get proper results. 11 is used as divisor because a container number has 11 letters and digits in total. In step 1 the numbers 11, 22 and 33 are left out as they are multiples of the divisor.
|b) Division by 11:||562.272...|
|c) Erase decimal digits:||562|
|d) Multiply by 11:||6182|
|a) minus d) = Check Digit:||3|
In day-to-day business it happens that containers do appear which do not follow the ISO 6346 identification at all; however, they are fully CSC safety approved containers. Usually these are "shippers owned" containers, which means that they are not owned by the carrier but supplied by the cargo owners (shippers). They may have no registered owner code and no category identifier and have no check digit. It is advisable to follow ISO 6346 as the absence of a compliant identification code causes problems for both carriers and container terminals to correctly identify the equipment and properly deliver the cargo, because computer systems require ISO 6346 conformant naming and as such missing prefixes are invented. For example, YYYY at the carrier and XXXX at the terminal causes the equipment to mismatch. Moreover, since ISO 6346 identification has become a requirement in international Customs conventions (Customs Conventions on Containers and Istanbul Convention), many Customs Administrations have begun validating that containers are marked as per the standard.
The codes are compiled of the following elements:
The following is an overview of the most common codes:
|ISO Type Group||ISO Size Type|
|20GP||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.||20G0||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|20G1||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|20HR||ISOLADO CONTAINE REEFER||20H0||INSULATED CONTAINER|
|20PF||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)||20P1||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)|
|20TD||TANK CONTAINER||20T3||TANK CONTAINER|
|20TG||TANK CONTAINER||20T7||TANK CONTAINER|
|20TN||TANK CONTAINER||20T0||TANK CONTAINER|
|22BU||BULK CONTAINER||22B0||BULK CONTAINER|
|22GP||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.||22G0||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|22G1||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|22HR||INSULATED CONTAINER||22H0||INSULATED CONTAINER|
|22PC||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)||22P3||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)|
|22P8||FLAT (COLL.FLUSH FOLDING)|
|22PF||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)||22P1||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)|
|22P7||FLAT (GENSET CARRIER)|
|22RC||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)||22R9||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)|
|22RS||BUILT-IN GEN. F. POWER SPLY OF REEF||22R7||BUILT-IN GEN. F. POWER SPLY OF REEF|
|22RT||REEFER CONTAINER||22R1||REEFER CONTAINER|
|22SN||NAMED CARGO CONTAINER||22S1||NAMED CARGO CONTAINER|
|22TD||TANK CONTAINER||22T3||TANK CONTAINER|
|22TG||TANK CONTAINER||22T7||TANK CONTAINER|
|22TN||TANK CONTAINER||22T0||TANK CONTAINER|
|22UP||HARDTOP CONTAINER||22U6||HARDTOP CONTAINER|
|22UT||OPEN TOP CONTAINER||22U1||OPEN TOP CONTAINER|
|22VH||VENTILATED CONTAINER||22V0||VENTILATED CONTAINER|
|25GP||GP-CONTAINER OVER-HEIGHT||25G0||GP-CONTAINER OVER-HEIGHT|
|26GP||GP-CONTAINER OVER-HEIGHT||26G0||GP-CONTAINER OVER-HEIGHT|
|26HR||INSULATED CONTAINER||26H0||INSULATED CONTAINER|
|28TG||TANK FOR GAS||28T8||TANK FOR GAS|
|28UT||OPEN TOP (HALF HEIGHT)||28U1||OPEN TOP (HALF HEIGHT)|
|28VH||VE-HALF-HEIGHT =1448 MM HEIGHT||28V0||VE-HALF-HEIGHT =1448 MM HEIGHT|
|2EGP||GEN. PURP. WITHOUT VENT WIDTH 2.5M||2EG0||HIGH CUBE CONT. (WIDTH 2.5M)|
|42GP||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.||42G0||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|42G1||GENERAL PURPOSE CONT.|
|42HR||INSULATED CONTAINER||42H0||INSULATED CONTAINER|
|42PC||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)||42P3||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)|
|42P8||FLAT (COLL.FLUSH FOLDING)|
|42PF||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)||42P1||FLAT (FIXED ENDS)|
|42PS||FLAT (SPACE SAVER)||42P6||FLAT SPACE SAVER|
|42RC||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)||42R9||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)|
|42RS||REEFER CONT.(DIESEL GEN.)||42R3||REEFER CONT.(DIESEL GEN.)|
|42RT||REEFER CONTAINER||42R1||REEFER CONTAINER|
|42SN||NAMED CARGO CONTAINER||42S1||NAMED CARGO CONTAINER|
|42TD||TANK CONTAINER||42T5||TANK CONTAINER|
|42TG||TANK CONTAINER||42T8||TANK CONTAINER|
|42TN||TANK CONTAINER||42T2||TANK CONTAINER|
|42UP||HARDTOP CONTAINER||42U6||HARDTOP CONTAINER|
|42UT||OPEN TOP CONTAINER||42U1||OPEN TOP CONTAINER|
|45BK||BULK CONTAINER||45B3||BULK CONTAINER|
|45GP||HIGH CUBE CONT.||45G0||HIGH CUBE CONT.|
|45G1||HIGH CUBE CONT.|
|45PC||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)||45P3||FLAT (COLLAPSIBLE)|
|45P8||FLAT (COLL.FLUSH FOLDING)|
|45RC||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)||45R9||REEFER CONT.(NO FOOD)|
|45RT||REEFER HIGHCUBE CONTAINER||45R1||REEFER HIGHCUBE CONTAINER|
|45UT||OPEN TOP CONTAINER||45U1||OPEN TOP CONTAINER|
|45UP||HIGH CUBE HARDTOP CONT.||45U6||HIGH CUBE HARDTOP CONT.|
|46HR||INSULATED CONTAINER||46H0||INSULATED CONTAINER|
|48TG||TANK FOR GAS||48T8||TANK FOR GAS|
|4CGP||GP CONTAINER||4CG0||GP CONTAINER (WIDTH 2.5 M)|
|L0GP||HIGH CUBE CONT.||L0G1||HIGH CUBE CONT.|
|L2GP||HIGH CUBE CONT.||L2G1||HIGH CUBE CONT.|
|L5GP||HIGH CUBE CONT.||L5G1||HIGH CUBE CONT.|
Use the below to calculate Size/Type of a less commonly used ISO 6346 containers:
|ISO Length Codes||Second size code character|
|Code||Container length||Code||Container height||Width|
|H||43′||C||8′6″||2438mm < x <= 2500mm|
|ISO Type Codes|
|G0||General - Openings at one or both ends|
|G1||General - Passive vents at upper part of cargo space|
|G2||General - Openings at one or both ends + full openings on one or both sides|
|G3||General - Openings at one or both ends + partial openings on one or both sides|
|V0||Fantainer - Non-mechanical, vents at lower and upper parts of cargo space|
|V2||Fantainer - Mechanical ventilation system located internally|
|V4||Fantainer - Mechanical ventilation system located externally|
|R0||Integral Reefer - Mechanically refrigerated|
|R1||Integral Reefer - Mechanically refrigerated and heated|
|R2||Integral Reefer - Self-powered mechanically refrigerated|
|R3||Integral Reefer - Self-powered mechanically refrigerated and heated|
|H0||Refrigerated or heated with removable equipment located externally; heat transfer coefficient K=0.4W/M2.K|
|H1||Refrigerated or heated with removable equipment located internally|
|H2||Refrigerated or heated with removable equipment located externally; heat transfer coefficient K=0.7W/M2.K|
|H5||Insulated - Heat transfer coefficient K=0.4W/M2.K|
|H6||Insulated - Heat transfer coefficient K=0.7W/M2.K|
|U0||Open Top - Openings at one or both ends|
|U1||Open Top - Idem + removable top members in end frames|
|U2||Open Top - Openings at one or both ends + openings at one or both sides|
|U3||Open Top - Idem + removable top members in end frames|
|U4||Open Top - Openings at one or both ends + partial on one and full at other side|
|U5||Open Top - Complete, fixed side and end walls ( no doors )|
|T0||Tank - Non-dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 0.45 bar|
|T1||Tank - Non-dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 1.50 bar|
|T2||Tank - Non-dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 2.65 bar|
|T3||Tank - Dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 1.50 bar|
|T4||Tank - Dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 2.65 bar|
|T5||Tank - Dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 4.00 bar|
|T6||Tank - Dangerous liquids, minimum pressure 6.00 bar|
|T7||Tank - Gases, minimum pressure 9.10 bar|
|T8||Tank - Gases, minimum pressure 22.00 bar|
|T9||Tank - Gases, minimum pressure to be decided|
|B0||Bulk - Closed|
|B1||Bulk - Airtight|
|B3||Bulk - Horizontal discharge, test pressure 1.50 bar|
|B4||Bulk - Horizontal discharge, test pressure 2.65 bar|
|B5||Bulk - Tipping discharge, test pressure 1.50 bar|
|B6||Bulk - Tipping discharge, test pressure 2.65 bar|
|P0||Flat or Bolster - Plain platform|
|P1||Flat or Bolster - Two complete and fixed ends|
|P2||Flat or Bolster - Fixed posts, either free-standing or with removable top member|
|P3||Flat or Bolster - Folding complete end structure|
|P4||Flat or Bolster - Folding posts, either free-standing or with removable top member|
|P5||Flat or Bolster - Open top, open ends (skeletal)|
|S2||Live fish carrier|
The country code consists of two capital letters of the Latin alphabet as described in ISO 3166. It indicates the country where the code is registered not the nationality of the owner or operator of the container. The letters of the code shall not be less than 100 mm high.
Operational marks are intended solely to convey information requested for the movement of containers or give visual warnings. They relate to
The following is a list of further freight container related ISO specifications, where not all have an article assigned yet (you can help improve Wikipedia and start one):
20 (twenty) is the natural number following 19 and preceding 21. A group of twenty units may also be referred to as a score.28 (number)
28 (twenty-eight) is the natural number following 27 and preceding 29.6346
6346 may refer to:
6346 (number), a number of verses in the Qu'ran
6346 Syukumeguri, a minor planet
ISO 6346, an international standard covering the coding
The year in the 7th millenniumBIC code
BIC or BIC code can refer to:
ISO 6346 – shipping container owner code, defined by the Bureau International des Containers (BIC)
ISO 9362 – business identifier code for banks and other institutions, defined by SWIFTBureau International des Containers
The Bureau International des Containers et du Transport Intermodal, originally French: Bureau International des Conteneurs, and still abbreviated BIC, and in English parlance sometimes called International Container Bureau oversees standards for intermodal containers, commonly referred to as "shipping containers".
The goal of the organization is to promote cooperation among corporations, governments and independent organizations relating to intermodal freight transport, the process of containerization, and the transport and handling of shipping containers.Conex box
The CONEX box was developed during the Korean War and was used to transport and store supplies during the Korean and Vietnam war. It was reinvented by Malcom McLean to form the standard Intermodal shipping container (often called an ISO box, after ISO 6346) that is used widely by container shipping companies today.Ellen Rothenberg
Ellen Rothenberg (1949-) is an American visual artist and writer whose socio-political art manifests itself in performance, installation, objects, and visual essays. The content of her art addresses the politics of everyday life and how communities engage through collaborative practices. She has exhibited her work internationally at the Museum der Moderne Salzburg, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, the Brukenthal National Museum, Romania, the Neues Museum Weserburg, Bremen, Germany, among other institutions. Her writing has been published in "Immersive Life," University of Chicago Press; "Experimental Geography,” ICI NYC; Art Journal; and Woman Studies Quarterly, among other publications.ISO 668
ISO 668 - Series 1 freight containers — Classification, dimensions and ratings is an ISO international standard which classifies intermodal freight shipping containers and standardises their size and weight specifications. Introduced in 1968, ISO 668 regulates both external and internal dimensions of containers, as well as the minimum door opening size, where applicable. It also specifies the associated gross weight ratings, and requirements for load transfer areas in the base structures of containers, since amendment 1 of 2005.The current edition of the standard is version E of 2013, which integrates version E from 1995 with its two amendments of 2005.Intermodal container
An intermodal container is a large standardized shipping container, designed and built for intermodal freight transport, meaning these containers can be used across different modes of transport – from ship to rail to truck – without unloading and reloading their cargo. Intermodal containers are primarily used to store and transport materials and products efficiently and securely in the global containerized intermodal freight transport system, but smaller numbers are in regional use as well. These containers are known under a number of names, such as simply container, cargo or freight container, ISO container, shipping, sea or ocean container, container van or (Conex) box, sea can or c can.Intermodal containers exist in many types and a number of standardized sizes, but ninety percent of the global container fleet are so-called "dry freight" or "general purpose" containers, durable closed steel boxes, mostly of either twenty or forty feet (6.1 or 12.2 m) standard length. The common heights are 8 feet 6 inches (2.6 m) and 9 feet 6 inches (2.9 m) – the latter are known as High Cube or Hi-Cube containers.Just like cardboard boxes and pallets, these containers are a means to bundle cargo and goods into larger, unitized loads, that can be easily handled, moved, and stacked, and that will pack tightly in a ship or yard. Intermodal containers share a number of key construction features to withstand the stresses of intermodal shipping, to facilitate their handling and to allow stacking, as well as being identifiable through their individual, unique ISO 6346 reporting mark.
In 2012, there were about 20.5 million intermodal containers in the world of varying types to suit different cargoes. Containers have largely supplanted the traditional break bulk cargo – in 2010 containers accounted for 60% of the world's seaborne trade. The predominant alternative methods of transport carry bulk cargo – whether gaseous, liquid or solid – e.g. by bulk carrier or tank ship, tank car or truck. For air freight, the more light-weight IATA-defined unit load device is used.List of International Organization for Standardization standards, 5000-7999
This is a list of published International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards and other deliverables. For a complete and up-to-date list of all the ISO standards, see the ISO catalogue.The standards are protected by copyright and most of them must be purchased. However, about 300 of the standards produced by ISO and IEC's Joint Technical Committee 1 (JTC1) have been made freely and publicly available.List of UIC country codes
The UIC Country Code is a two digit-number identifying countries in which members of the International Union of Railways (UIC) are active. The UIC has issued numbering systems for rolling stock (UIC wagon numbers) and stations that include the country code. The values are defined in UIC leaflet 920-14.
The country code had originally been designed as a company code but mainly as a consequence of the reorganisation of the rail sector in Europe changes were necessary. When the former UIC vehicle number became a vehicle register number (European Vehicle Number, EVN) issued by governmental organisations, the code was attributed to the countries. Vehicle numbering is now governed by the Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail and in Technical Specifications for Interoperability (TSI) of the European Union.
Railroads in North America use a system based on company-specific reporting marks, and a similar system, ISO 6346, is used for intermodal containers.MACS3
The MACS3 Loading Computer System is a computer controlled loading system for commercial vessels, developed by Navis. Prior to October, 2017 it was offered by Interschalt maritime systems GmbH, before by Seacos Computersysteme & Software GmbH.
MACS3 consists of computer hardware and a range of software, which aim to minimize the operational load while loading a vessel, and to prevent any hard limitations from being breached.Registration authority
Registration authorities exist for many standards organizations, such as ANNA (Association of National Numbering Agencies for ISIN), the Object Management Group, W3C, IEEE and others. In general, registration authorities all perform a similar function, in promoting the use of a particular standard through facilitating its use. This may be by applying the standard, where appropriate, or by verifying that a particular application satisfies the standard's tenants. Maintenance agencies, in contrast, may change an element in a standard based on set rules – such as the creation or change of a currency code when a currency is created or revalued (i.e. TRL to TRY for Turkish lira). The Object Management Group has an additional concept of certified provider, which is deemed an entity permitted to perform some functions on behalf of the registration authority, under specific processes and procedures documented within the standard for such a role.
An ISO registration authority (RAs) is not authorized to update standards but provides a registration function to facilitate implementation of an International Standard (e.g. ISBN number for books). Frequently, facilitating the implementation of an ISO standard’s requirements is best suited, by its nature, to one entity, an RA. This, de facto, creates a monopoly situation and this is why care needs to be taken with respect to the functions carried out and the fees charged to avoid an abuse of such a situation. In most cases, there is a formal legal contract in place between the standards body, such as the ISO General Secretariat, and the selected registration authority.
ISO registration authorities differ from a maintenance agency. Maintenance agencies are authorized to update particular elements in an International Standard and as a matter of policy, the secretariats of MAs are assigned to bodies forming part of the ISO system (member bodies or organizations to which a member body delegates certain tasks in its country). The membership of MAs and their operating procedures are subject to approval by the Technical Management Board.
While registration authorities for a particular standard typically do not change, the position is not formally guaranteed and is subject to review and reassignment to a different firm or organization. In some cases, the concept of a registration authority may not exist for a standard at all.
By further example, the equivalent registration authority organization for Internet standards is the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority.Reporting mark
A reporting mark is an alphabetic code of one to four letters used to identify owners or lessees of rolling stock and other equipment used on certain railroad networks.
In North America the mark, which consists of an alphabetic code of one to four letters, is stenciled on each piece of equipment, along with a one- to six-digit number. This information is used to uniquely identify every such rail car or locomotive, thus allowing it to be tracked by the railroad they are traveling over, which shares the information with other railroads and customers.Standard Carrier Alpha Code
The Standard Carrier Alpha Code (SCAC) is a privately controlled US code used to identify road transport companies. It is typically two to four letters long. The National Motor Freight Traffic Association developed the SCAC code in the 1960s to help road transport companies computerize data and records.Unique identifier
With reference to a given (possibly implicit) set of objects, a unique identifier (UID) is any identifier which is guaranteed to be unique among all identifiers used for those objects and for a specific purpose. There are three main types of unique identifiers, each corresponding to a different generation strategy:
serial numbers, assigned incrementally or sequentially
random numbers, selected from a number space much larger than the maximum (or expected) number of objects to be identified. Although not really unique, some identifiers of this type may be appropriate for identifying objects in many practical applications and are, with abuse of language, still referred to as "unique"
names or codes allocated by choice which are forced to be unique by keeping a central registry such as the EPC Information Services.The above methods can be combined, hierarchically or singly, to create other generation schemes which guarantee uniqueness. In many cases, a single object may have more than one unique identifier, each of which identifies it for a different purpose. In relational databases, certain attributes of an entity that serve as unique identifiers are called primary keys.
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