Technical Reports

Analyses of Rail Chill Effect

  • 01
  • Jun
  • 1998
AUTHOR: Federal Railroad Administration
OFFICE: RPD
SUBOFFICE: RPD-30
REPORT NUMBER: DOT/FRA/ORD-97/07
KEYWORDS: Braking; Heat transfer analysis; Rail vehicles; Wheels
ABSTRACT: The principles of heat transfer are applied to analyze the so-called “rail chill” effect, which refers to heat loss by conduction from a hot rail vehicle wheel through the contact area into a cold rail, the wheel having been heated by friction braking. A difference of more than a factor of two is demonstrated between chill effectiveness based on instantaneous heat generation and transfer rates, and the total heat lost to the rail, as a percentage of the total heat generated over a specific period of time, in transient situations such as stop braking.
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