Richard Schneider, Vice President R&D – Bombardier Transportation

The paper analyses the potential cost savings of the wear dependant component in the new track access charge model in Switzerland for different technical solutions. The areas of vehicle development with a positive effect onto the track access costs are identified as:

  • Axle guidance system such as FLEXX Tronic ARS or HALL
  • Axle guidance stiffness
  • Wheel distance
  • Un suspended mass and drive concept
  • Traction power installed
  • Vehicle mass

A closer look at the results of the different systems allows for the following conclusions:

  • The highest cost savings can be achieved with wheel guidance systems that provide the lowest possible effective yaw stiffness of the wheel set, such as FLEXX Tronic ARS
  • With a passive system like HALL, a max. possible reduction of the wear dependant factor is expected to end at around 15%.
    Further contributors are the stiffness of the axle guidance, the unsuspended mass and the wheel distance with around 2 – 5%
  • The unsuspended mass provides a six times higher reduction as an equivalent mass reduction in the suspended part of the vehicle.
  • Switchable yaw dampers, installed power and the vehicle weight itself provide a saving potential below around 2%

New solutions are expensive due to its development status and form a high challenge for an economic market introduction. In addition, the evaluation process could further prevent from a final selection, if an adequate differentiation between the systems is not supported by the criteria’s defined.

The highest challenge though is with the vehicle producer’s, to develop cost effective solutions to the customers.

Finally, the new track access charging model in Switzerland is considered as the only valid tool, to change the negative trend in the costs for track maintenance and for the re-initiation of the development of track friendly rolling stock.

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