SkyCell — the CO₂-efficient Alternative to Medicine Deliveries by Air Freight

SkyCell is a specialist provider for containers which were specifically developed for the transportation of temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical products. A comprehensive study by myclimate shows that the SkyCell container solution almost halves the CO₂ emissions of each airfreight shipment. A comprehensive life cycle analysis compared the SkyCell 2500 and 1500 containers with a conventional competitor product and analysed the carbon footprint of the typical cold chain route, in addition to the resulting emissions from the manufacture of the container through to its withdrawal from use.

The objective of the 2018 study was to compare the SkyCell container solutions for the transport of pharmaceutical products at temperatures of 2-8°C with conventional solutions. All processes, from the manufacture and pre-treatment through to transport and up to the end of the product life, were analysed to facilitate a holistic evaluation of the carbon footprint of the refrigerated containers. All solutions examined were designed for use in cold chain transport in the pharmaceutical industry.

"We have determined that the large SkyCell 2500 container with its high internal transport volume, under consideration of the manufacturing process as well as the individual delivery, performed the best, followed by the SkyCell 1500," said Dr Bettina Kahlert, Head of Resource Efficiency at myclimate.

The environmental impact of transport using SkyCell containers was evaluated and compared using data from the ecoinvent database. The calculation focused on the precise environmental impact of transport (e.g. energy consumption, carbon dioxide, pollutant emissions). "From our analysis, we can conclude that CO₂ emissions can be significantly reduced using the optimised weight-to-volume ratio of containers such as SkyCell's," stated Dr Bettina Kahlert, Head of Resource Efficiency at myclimate.

"We are proud that our work on the development of the container has paid off. It is our mission to provide the most reliable and environmentally friendly transport solutions for temperature-sensitive freight. The study from myclimate shows that we have achieved this," stated Richard Ettl, CEO of SkyCell. "We will continue to improve our technologies and services, to avoid product losses resulting from temperature fluctuations and to better protect our climate.”

About SkyCell:

SkyCell is the fourth biggest provider of airfreight containers for the pharmaceutical industry. Twelve of 20 leading pharmaceutical companies have tested SkyCell and attested to the fact that temperature fluctuations have occurred in less than 0.1% of deliveries since introduction to the market. The efficient isolation and state-of-the-art cooling technology allow the containers to maintain a consistent internal temperature for up to 160 hours. All containers are fitted with IoT sensors, which facilitate a gapless delivery chain with global tracking and monitoring. With headquarters in Switzerland and a global service network, SkyCell serves pharmaceutical companies all over the world.


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