The Importance and Operation Guide of Magnetic Inspection of Air Cargo

Jun 07,2024
Industry News
Are you worried about whether your goods can pass the magnetic inspection? Why do some products require special magnetic inspection and shielding before flight

As a cross-border e-commerce or enterprise, are you worried about whether your goods can pass the magnetic inspection? Unsure whether the process requires unpacking and may damage your carefully packaged items? Wondering how to deal with goods that fail the inspection? Why do some products require special magnetic inspection and shielding before flying?

If you have encountered similar situations, you will know the troubles and potential losses that may arise from not understanding the requirements for magnetic inspection of air cargo. Even seemingly non-magnetic goods such as speakers, electronic products and toys may contain magnetism sufficient to interfere with aircraft systems. One wrong move could ground your cargo, wasting your time, money, and customer relationships.

magnetic inspection of air cargo

How can you ensure your cargo meets air transport safety standards by understanding the importance of magnetic inspections and following the correct procedures? In this guide, we will explore why these inspections are so important and which cargo needs to be inspected. We will reveal its important role in maintaining air transport safety and provide a comprehensive guide on how to seamlessly integrate this process into your transportation business.

As an efficient and fast logistics method, air cargo has become an important link connecting businesses and consumers around the world. It has been favored by more and more businesses and sellers. Among them, magnetic inspection of air cargo is an important link that cannot be ignored. It not only affects the transportation safety of cargo, but may also have a potential impact on the economic benefits of the enterprise.

What is magnetic inspection of air cargo?

Magnetic inspection of cargo is a necessary measure to ensure flight safety. Because weak stray magnetic fields may interfere with the aircraft's navigation system and control signals, it will affect the safety and stability of the flight.

Why do some air cargo need to be magnetically inspected?

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) classifies magnetic cargo as Class 9 dangerous goods and stipulates strict magnetic inspection requirements. Through magnetic inspection, we can detect and deal with magnetic goods in time to avoid potential threats to flight safety.

The purpose of magnetic inspection is to ensure that the goods will not cause potential harm to the aircraft during transportation.

According to the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR), any packaging material used for air transportation must undergo magnetic field strength testing. Specifically, if the maximum magnetic field strength at 2.1 meters (7 feet) from any point on the outer surface of the package is less than 0.159 A/m (200 nT), the item is not a magnetic material and can be transported as ordinary cargo. This threshold ensures that only goods with the lowest potential for magnetic interference can be transported without additional restrictions.

Which goods need to be magnetically inspected?

Common goods that need to be magnetically inspected include a series of products made of magnetic materials such as magnets, magnetic blocks, magnetic strips, such as speakers, microphones, etc. In addition, some motors or magnetic products also need to be magnetically inspected. In order to ensure the smooth transportation of goods, the owner should conduct a self-inspection of the goods before shipment to determine whether magnetic inspection is required.

Magnetic materials: magnets, magnets, magnetic steel, magnetic nails, magnetic heads, magnetic strips, magnetic sheets, magnetic blocks, ferrite cores, aluminum nickel cobalt, electromagnets, magnetic fluid seals, ferrites, oil-cut electromagnets, rare earth permanent magnets (motor rotors).

Audio equipment: speakers, microphones, speakers, CDs, multimedia speakers, and various audio accessories.

Miscellaneous: hair dryers, televisions, mobile phones, electric motors, toy magnets, magnetic health products and computer components, compasses, car air pumps, etc.

These items may emit magnetic fields that interfere with aircraft systems, so they need to be carefully inspected and mitigation measures taken if necessary.

Does magnetic inspection require unpacking of goods?

Generally speaking, magnetic inspection does not require unpacking of goods. Goods are inspected when they are well packaged to ensure that they are not damaged in the process. Inspectors use professional magnetic measuring instruments to measure the magnetic field strength at a distance of 2.1 meters (7 feet) from the surface of the goods. This method is called stray magnetic field detection and can fully inspect the six sides of each piece of goods without destroying the packaging of the goods.

If the goods cannot pass the magnetic inspection, the inspector will provide technical services to solve the problem. This may include disassembling the goods and providing solutions with the customer's consent. If the shielding can meet the requirements of air transportation, the goods can be shielded. Shielding does not eliminate the magnetism of the goods, but reduces its interference with the aircraft system. Customers with conditions can also take back the goods and handle them themselves before sending them for inspection. The shielding process usually involves using materials such as thin iron sheets to make a Faraday cage to reduce the magnetic field without significantly affecting the performance of the product.

For goods that cannot be fully protected to meet air transportation requirements, alternative transportation methods such as sea transportation are recommended. This ensures that the goods arrive safely at their destination through different transportation methods.

The difference between magnetic detection and demagnetization

Magnetic detection is not the same as demagnetization. The purpose of magnetic detection is to detect the magnetic size of the goods within a certain distance, rather than to eliminate the magnetism of the goods. This process will not cause damage to the packaging of the goods, and the goods do not need to be unpacked.

Operation steps of magnetic detection

  1. First, submit the original magnetic measurement application.
  2. The magnetic inspection center will have special personnel to conduct magnetic measurement experiments for the goods at the airport.
  3. Use a magnetic measuring instrument, which works similarly to a compass.
  4. Keep the instrument 2 meters away from the cargo and rotate it for several weeks with the midpoint of the cargo's length, width, and height as the center.
  5. If the pointer deflects more than 5 degrees, it means that the cargo is highly magnetic and needs to be packaged better.
  6. The method to improve the packaging is very simple. You only need to replace the packaging with a container made of thin iron sheets to shield the magnetic field, which conforms to the Faraday cage principle in physics.

The magnetic inspection fee is generally calculated in the smallest unit of measurement (SLAC), which generally refers to the number of boxes. In the field of import and export logistics, this fee is an airport miscellaneous fee and is generally borne by the shipper, except for EXW (ex works) terms, other agreements may apply.

Magnetic inspection of air cargo is one of the important measures to ensure flight safety. Before shipping, the owner should conduct a self-inspection of the cargo to determine whether magnetic inspection is required, and package and apply for inspection as required. By detecting and mitigating potential magnetic interference, we can maintain the integrity of the aircraft's navigation and control systems and protect the safety of passengers and cargo.

Simplify your air freight with Chinadivision

Now that you understand the importance of magnetic inspection and how to properly prepare your cargo, the next step is to work with a reliable air freight forwarder to seamlessly handle your cargo transportation. Ensuring the smooth transportation of cargo from origin to destination is more than just a matter of magnetic inspection. It also requires a professional transportation team, sophisticated operating procedures, and a full range of service guarantees.

Chinadivision specializes in providing comprehensive logistics solutions for international air freight companies. With rich industry experience and a global network, we can ensure that your magnetic and non-magnetic cargo is transported compliantly and efficiently. You will no longer be troubled by delays, cargo rejections, or excessive costs due to improper cargo handling.

Get started now and request a free quote for your shipping needs. Our logistics consultants will work closely with you to create an optimized air freight solution that provides excellent value and performance. Ensure a seamless and compliant air freight experience every time.