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Investigation of the risk for rolling contact fatigue on wheels of different passenger trains

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Of late, rolling contact fatigue (RCF) has become more common on wheels of passenger trains. Cracks initiated at the wheel surface have been found on certain trains, which has led to wheel damage and more frequent re-profiling, reducing the lifetime of the wheels. Two possible theories to predict circumferential RCF have been identified, i.e. the shakedown theory and damage function. Investigations have been performed with the MBS simulation tool SIMPACK. The wheel profiles in the investigations are mainly P8 and S1002. In principle, the correlation between field observations and predicted damage is fairly good. It is concluded that both the shakedown theory and damage function can be used for indicative predictions using quasi-static simulations. With the limitations of the study, some guidelines are given for the assessment of results from quasi-static simulations in curves.

Keywords: rolling contact fatigue; simulation; wheel-rail contact

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Bombardier Transportation, Vehicle Dynamics, Division Mainline and Metros, Ostra Ringvagen, Vasterås, Sweden

Publication date: 2008-09-01

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