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FAST Heavy Axle Load Program Safety Compendium

  • 01
  • Jan
  • 2001
AUTHOR: Federal Railroad Administration
SUBJECT: Facilities & Test Equipment
KEYWORDS: Facility for Accelerated Service Testing, HAL, Operational Safety
ABSTRACT: [From the Introduction] The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and the Association of American Railroads (AAR) have jointly funded research activity at the Facility for Accelerated Service Testing (FAST) to study the effects of increasing the nominal North American railroad axle load from 33-tons (263,000-lb gross vehicle weight) to 39-tons (315,000-lb gross vehicle weight). Since its inception in 1988, the FAST Heavy Axle Load (HAL) program has generated a substantial amount of test data concerning track and vehicle performance under 39- ton axle loads. Experimental work performed at FAST has been essential to understanding the safety implications of operating increased axle loads and to the development of models defining their economic viability. The intent of this document is to summarize FAST/HAL test results as they relate to railroad operational safety.
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