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Trackside inspection - High Frequency Vibration Monitoring

Technique: High Frequency Vibration Monitoring via Accelerometers mounted on rail

Development of a Trackside continuous monitoring system prototype for inspection of passing rail stock (light and heavy rail)

Result: A working prototype high frequency vibration analysis (HFVA) trackside inspection system fully integrated with De Lijn's existing infrastructure including telemetry and information systems.

The trackside HFVA inspection system combines a number of sensors to collect high frequency vibration data of passing rolling stock. In addition, the system has an optional excitation mechanism comprising a unique small impact hammer actuated by a push pull solenoid. A hard hammer tip ensures a short impact, thereby exciting the wheel up to very high frequencies, and gives the capability of detecting cracking in addition to ovality, flats and other wheelset issues. The sensors are microphones (with a high bandwidth) placed on the rail tracks, and are used to measure the response of the excitation. The data collection system contains novel software which is able to compute the collected HFVA data and alert for possible defects in the wheelsets. In addition the system can interface with existing telemetry infrastructure to provide information to end user's existing knowledge databases. The system interfaces with its own server, and the collected details can be accessed anywhere in the world via an internet browser. Alerts can be programmed to flash signal lights, send emails and text messages.

Developed Features:

  • Detection of Wheel flats, Oval wheel, Broken wheel gummy
  • Real time alert for bad wheel
  • Collected data measurements can be checked using a web page
Trackside inspection

Trackside inspection
Vlaamse Vervoermaatschappij De Lijn (Belgium) University of Birmingham (UK) Instituto de Soldadura e Qualidade (Portugal) TWI Ltd (UK) SNCF (France) Feldman Enterprises LTD (Cyprus) TSC (UK) Envirocoustics S. A. (Greece) EMEF (Portugal) Alfa Products & Technologies (Belgium)Alfa Products & Technologies (Belgium) VTG Rail UK Ltd (UK)