Conventional Fuel Tank Blunt Impact Tests: Test and Analysis Results

The Federal Railroad Administration’s Office of Research and Development is conducting research into fuel tank crashworthiness. A series of impact tests are planned to measure fuel tank deformation under two types of dynamic loading conditions – blunt and raking impacts. This paper describes the results of the first set of blunt impact tests for two retired EMD F-40 locomotive fuel tanks, Tank 232 and Tank 202. On October 8, 2013 and October 9, 2013, the FRA performed impact tests on two conventional passenger locomotive fuel tanks at the Transportation Technology Center (TTC) in Pueblo, Colorado. Each fuel tank was emptied of fluid and mounted on a crash wall with the bottom surface exposed. A rail cart modified with a “rigid” indenter was released to impact the center of the bottom of each fuel tank at about 6 mph. A center-impact on Tank 232 was chosen to impact between two baffles. A center-impact on Tank 202 was chosen to impact on a baffle. Prior to the test, computer models were developed from measurements taken on the test articles. Material properties were estimated based on Brinell hardness measurements. Computer analyses were conducted to determine the conditions for the test, i.e. instrumentation, location of impact, target impact speeds and to predict the deformation behavior of the tank. Post-test, the resulting stress-strain relationships for the bottom sheets and baffles of both tanks were used to update the finite element models of the two tanks. The models were also updated to reflect the actual geometry of the tanks as confirmed by measurements of the tank interiors. The results of the finite element (FE) models run at the test conditions with the updated tank details are compared with the results from the test itself. Specifically, the deformation progression and the residual dent depth are compared between the tests and the models.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Photos; References;
  • Pagination: 10p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01526300
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: JRC2014-3786
  • Created Date: May 23 2014 3:16PM