Prediction of the effects of friction control on top-of-rail cracks

Rolling contact fatigue is a major problem connected with railway tracks, especially in curves, since it leads to higher maintenance costs. By optimising the top-of-rail friction, the wear and cracks on the top of the rail can eventually be reduced without causing very long braking distances. There are several research articles available on crack prediction, but most of the research is focused either on rail without a friction modifier or on wheels with and without friction control. In the present study, in order to predict the formation of surface-initiated rolling contact fatigue, a range of friction coefficients with different Kalker’s reduction factors has been assumed. Kalker’s reduction factor takes care of the basic tendency of creepage as a function of the traction forces at lower creepage. The assumed range covers possible friction values from those for non-lubricated rail to those for rail with a minimum measured friction control on the top of the rail using a friction modifier. A fatigue index model based on the shakedown theory was used to predict the generation of surface-initiated rolling contact fatigue. Simulations were performed using multi-body simulation, for which inputs were taken from the Iron Ore line in the north of Sweden. The effect of friction control was studied for different curve radii, ranging from 200?m to 3000?m, and for different axle loads from 30 to 40 tonnes at a constant train speed of 60?km/h. One example of a result is that a maximum friction coefficient (µ) of 0.2 with a Kalker’s reduction factor of 15% is needed in the case of trains with a heavy axle load to avoid crack formation.


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  • Accession Number: 01662598
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 8 2018 2:06PM