Etihad Cargo, Masdar Institute launch new cargo containers
Etihad Cargo has teamed up with the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology to launch a
new design of temperature-controlled and energy-efficient air cargo container cool dolly system.
The carrier says that the diesel-powered cooling systems on dollies used at many airports and
ground-handling operations use too much energy, are expensive to operate and often have poor
The new design, unveiled at the World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi on 18 January,
uses a custom-made power bank that can be attached to solar panels for recharging; the
temperature can be properly regulated while minimising power consumption. It also features
thermoelectric module technologies and modified compressor units.
The new cool dolly is designed for cargoes such as pharmaceuticals, livestock and perishables
that need to be transferred between the aircraft and cargo warehouses.
It will give Etihad Cargo and the Abu Dhabi International Airport a unique competitive advantage
over other airports, the carrier says.
The carrier plans to extend the system to other Etihad locations. A spokesman added, “Every
technology we develop or implement always keeps our extended international network in mind.
Though Abu Dhabi is our starting point, other geographies and hubs will definitely benefit from
Masdar Institute vice president of research, Dr. Steve Griffiths, explained. “Our research
platform integrates energy and system engineering in a manner that we believe can make a
meaningful contribution in transport and logistics operations in the UAE and overseas.”
However, the system can also work off the normal power grid in less sunny locations. Around
The Etihad spokesman added that the carrier was refining the prototype, and will look at rolling
this out across the network once this has been finalised. Etihad Airways could also license the
product to other operators, but will prioritise its own partner network.