Technical Reports

Vertical Shaker System Laboratory Tests of Trailer on a Flatcar (CR-124)

  • 01
  • Jun
  • 1977
AUTHOR: C. Peterson, R. Owings, D. Peacock, S. MacIntyre, C. Jones, M. Kenworthy
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: FRA-OFS-77
SUBJECT: Facilities & Test Equipment, Evaluation
KEYWORDS: Freight Cars, Intermodal Systems, Test Instrumentation, Vibration Analysis, Laboratory Testing
ABSTRACT: This report describes full scale Trailer on a Flatcar (TOFC) optimization tests performed during 1976 on the Vertical Shaker System at the Rail Dynamics Laboratory, Pueblo, CO. The purpose of these tests was to evaluate the effect of TOFC system component changes on lading vibration levels and to demonstrate the practicality of full scale railcar testing. A total of twenty loaded and barecar TOFC configurations were tested on the Vertical Shaker System. Flatcar truck configuration variations included two different suspension systems, the use of hydraulic stabilizers, resilient side bearings and pinning back of the friction snubbers; while trailer and van variations included tandem rear-axle location, tire pressure and brake settings. These tests indicated that, except for pinned snubbers, acceleration level variations of +20% were measured compared to a reference configuration. Pinning back the friction snubbers resulted in acceleration level increases exceeding 150%. The most significant experimental result of this study was that the predominant source of lading acceleration was in the lateral direction. The lateral acceleration of the lading increased proportionally to the vertical distance above the car floor at which it was measured.
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