An aircraft Unit Load Device (ULD) is either an aircraft container or a combination of an aircraft pallet and an aircraft pallet net for grouping and restraining cargo, mail and baggage for air transport. Since the 1950s, they’ve been used to safely transport goods by air. However, year after year, ULDs are often a leading cause of aircraft damage on the ground and also costs the industry about USD 400 million annually for the repair and loss.

To help reduce ULD related safety incidents as well as damage and loss, IATA has developed the ULDR. The ULDR is a comprehensive reference manual containing all the regulatory and airline requirements, technical and operating specifications as well as industry agreed standards and procedures applicable to all parties involved in the manufacturing, repair and maintenance, handling and operations of ULDs.

Order the 2022 ULDR online

If you are new to the ULD Regulations, all versions are updated annually. Digital products come with automatic updates for the year and a search function that makes finding current information easy. And, it's cheaper.  Find out which format suits your needs best.

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To purchase the 2021 edition of the ULDR that is effective until December 31, 2021, please contact us.

What’s inside the ULDR?

  • Applicability (aircraft ULD definition, regulatory framework, scope and applicability, responsibilities of airlines and other parties, training requirements)
  • Limitations (aircraft operating limitations applicable to ULD, aircraft contour drawings with dimensions of all the major aircraft types, requirements for pallet and net compatibility, requirements for continuing airworthiness and ULD serviceability check, requirements for ULD repairs)
  • Classification (cargo compartment classification, certified ULD and TSO-C90 approval, bilateral agreements on approval acceptance, non-certified containers, ULD accessories)
  • ULD Identification (IATA ULD ID Code, currently registered ULD Type Codes, diagrams, related characteristics including aircraft acceptability, airline and non-airline owner codes, pallet/net compatibility chart)
  • Technical and Operating Specifications for aircraft pallet, net, container, Fire Resistant Container, Temperature Controlled Container and other special purpose ULDs, Fire Containment Cover, cargo restrain strap and other ULD accessories
  • Marking (marking of ULD ID Code, TSO marking requirements, requirements for bar-coded ULD ID Code and ULD RFID tag, Operational Damage Limits Notice (ODLN))
  • Documentation and messaging (ULD Stock Control, ULD Control Receipt for ULD transfer, ULD  ownership documentation, ULD repair station documentation, operating instructions in CMM)
  • Handling (maintaining continuing airworthiness, handling requirements for ULD storage, transport and movement, transfer, build-up and break-down, and special purpose ULDs)
  • Appendixes (application for ULD Contour Code and registration of ULD Type Code, IATA ULD Management Scorecard, IATA ULD Training Program Assessment Checklist, illustration of ULD components on ODLN)

Still not sure if the ULDR is for you? Download the full table of contents.

Stay up-to-date

The key changes to ULDR 2022 (10th) edition include:

  • Clarification on aircraft structural limitations applicable to ULD
  • Clarification on the purpose of ULD characteristics contained in SS 40/1
  • Addition of aircraft Base Size T and U as well as relevant information in SS 40/1 to align with SAE AS36100
  • Addition of aircraft pallet Base Size T and U as well as relevant information in SS 50/1 to align with SAE AS36100
  • Deletion of SS 50/3 as well as all the content relating to igloo throughout the manual
  • Amendment to the definition of Aircraft Container to align with the definition of Aircraft ULD
  • Addition of illustration of components of aircraft pallet net and restraint strap listed on Operational Damage Limits Notice (ODLN)

ULD Training

You can learn more about ULD regulations and best practice in three ways.