WIKIPEDIA: An Intermediate bulk container (IBC) or IBC Tote or Pallet Tank, is a reusable industrial container designed for the transport and storage of bulk liquid and granulate substances (e.g. chemicals, food ingredients, solvents, pharmaceuticals, etc.). Intermediate bulk containers are stackable containers mounted on a pallet that are designed to be moved using aforklift or a pallet jack. IBCs have a volume range that is situated between drums and tanks, hence the term “intermediate“. The most common sizes are 1,040 liters / 275 U.S. gallons; 229 imperial gallons and 1,250 liters / 330 U.S. gallons; 275 imperial gallons (the 1040 liter IBCs are often listed as being 1000 liters). Cube shaped IBCs give a particularly good utilization of storage capacity compared to palletized drums – one 275 gallon IBC is equivalent to five 55-US-gallon (208 L; 46 imp gal) drums, and a 330 gallon IBC is equivalent to six 55 gallon drums.
The most common IBC is the one-time use plastic composite IBC; a white/translucent plastic container (typicallypolyethylene) housed within a tubular galvanized iron cage that’s attached to a pallet. IBCs can be manufactured out of a number of materials depending upon the needs of the shipper and the legal requirements that must be met. In addition to the plastic composite IBC, intermediate bulk containers are also manufactured out of fiberboard, wood, heavy gauge plastic, aluminum, carbon steel, and galvanized iron. Heavy gauge plastic IBCs are made of reinforced plastic that requires no steel cage; they have a pallet molded into the bottom so the entire unit is manufactured as a single piece. Folding IBCs are also made of heavy plastic, however, their sides fold inward when the unit is empty allowing the IBC to collapse into a much smaller package for return shipment or storage. Flexible intermediate bulk containers, made of woven polyethylene or polypropylene bags, are designed for storing or transporting dry, flowable products, such as sand, fertilizer, and granules of plastic. Almost all rigid IBCs are designed so they can be stacked vertically one on top of the other using a forklift. Most have a built-in tap (valve, spigot, or faucet) at the base of the container to which hoses can be attached, or through which the contents can be poured out into smaller containers.
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