[ID] => 9811
[post_author] => 34
[post_date] => 2018-07-04 08:44:26
[post_date_gmt] => 2018-07-04 07:44:26
[post_content] => Flat spots on freight wagon wheel sets are a common problem. Not only do they lead to increased noise emissions, they also cause the wheel sets to wear out more quickly, potentially causing failures that can lead to serious accidents.
Work by freight wagon leasing company Wascosa and Savvy® Telematic Systems has led to a solution. A research project supported by the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment looked at how Savvy’s existing telematics firmware could be used to detect flat spots through their acoustic fingerprint. The outcome of this work, says Savvy, represents a “true innovation” for the railfreight industry.
The project followed the realisation that noise pollution from railroad operations was regularly exposing more than 250,000 people in Switzerland to damaging or annoying noise. The Swiss Federal Railroad Noise Control Act, which was adopted in March 2000, gave industry until 2015 to put in place measures to reduce that impact. Those measures included the installation of noise barriers and sound-proof windows, as well as work on rail wagons themselves.
TURN IT DOWN
The research project undertaken by Wascosa and Savvy aimed to develop a reliable system for the early detection of flat spots, using existing telematics devices. At the start of the work, Wascosa had already equipped several hundred intermodal wagons with Savvy’s telematics units, giving the project a solid foundation for a one-year proof-of-concept stage.
It was understood that flat spots generate typical acoustic patterns. However, noise perception not only depends on its volume but also on its characteristics. While the sound of a passing freight train can be heard from quite a distance, it is not necessarily annoying; a flat spot on the other hand generates a distinct, unnatural periodic thumping sound.
Noise from rail wagons includes a wide range of different overlapping frequencies that are perceived as a ‘whooshing’ sound. Not every recurring vibration is a flat spot and not every disturbance on the running surface corresponds to a flat spot. It was therefore important to find significant correlations between the measured data of the affected wagons and the dimensions of the flat spots on the wagon wheels.
Savvy analysed the large amount of data collected from the Wascosa wagons in order to recognise flat spot patterns and develop reliable algorithms for flat spot detection. The flat spot algorithm generates significant and reliable indicators of a wagon’s dynamic vibration behaviour. The measured data is processed directly on the telematics system and the resulting indicators are recorded locally on the telematic system and compared with historical parameters. If there is a flat spot on the wagon, then an alarm is set off.
The final algorithm was successfully integrated into the telematic firmware and rolled out on the Wascosa wagon fleet during the project. Initial applications for other Savvy customers have confirmed the algorithm’s effectiveness: new flat spots were also reliably detected in that context.
“The results have exceeded expectations by far,” says Christoph Becker, project manager at Wascosa. “Thanks to the new data, we can effectively recognise critical situations, remedy them efficiently, and have an additional tool to manage vehicle maintenance and continue to optimise our predictive maintenance process.”
“We are extremely pleased to have successfully brought this project with Wascosa to its roll-out phase,” adds Aida Kaeser, CEO of Savvy Telematic Systems. “Our collaboration has demonstrated that Wascosa is an innovative partner.”
[post_title] => Rail: The quiet coach
[post_status] => publish
[comment_status] => open
[ping_status] => open
[post_name] => rail-quiet-coach
[post_modified] => 2018-07-30 16:31:34
[post_modified_gmt] => 2018-07-30 15:31:34
[post_parent] => 0
[guid] => https://www.hcblive.com/?p=9811
[menu_order] => 0
[post_type] => post
[comment_count] => 0
[filter] => raw
Wascosa and Savvy have worked with Swiss authorities to solve the annoying problem of flat-spotting on the wheels of freight wagons