Modeling pantograph–catenary arcing

The performance of the pantograph–catenary system plays a significant role in determining the reliability and safety of a high-speed train. With an increase in train speed, repeated separations between the pantograph and catenary result in an increased number of arcing events, which exacerbate the levels of damage on the pantograph–catenary system, leading to frequent train accidents. The arcing event is a complex phenomenon that is influenced by various factors, and involves interactions between the electromagnetic, thermal and airflow fields. The high temperatures generated by an arc result in ablation of material in the pantograph–catenary system, thus reducing its life expectancy. In order to investigate the mechanism of this damage to the pantograph–catenary system, a model of the arcing phenomenon is established and analyzed. In the proposed model, a set of arc plasma conservation equations are solved to determine the temperature distribution in the arc. The influences of different experimental conditions on the characteristics of the arc and the temperature distributions in the catenary wire and pantograph strip are calculated and discussed. Finally, the results obtained in the simulation studies are compared with realistic arc images recorded using a high-speed camera, and a good agreement is found.


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  • Accession Number: 01608774
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 9 2016 11:37AM