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Railway researchers get a patent on wear instrument

Published: 15 March 2018

A railway researcher at Luleå University of Technology has got patent on his measuring instrument capable of measuring wear and friction on all railways. The portable instrument takes into account, for example, snow and ice on the track and significantly reduces the cost of rail maintenance.

– We hope that the instrument will result in useful knowledge for the entire railway industry and for research. The patent proves that the Luleå Railway Research Center (JVTC) at Luleå University of Technology develops innovations that has such high quality, that they are patented , says Jan Lundberg, inventor and designer of the instrument and a Professor of Operation and Maintenance at Luleå University of Technology.

Takes into account snow on the track

The friction and wear tester, has the ability to match the weight of a fully loaded ore train when the wear and friction should be measured on the railway tracks in operation. The tester is made of brass, aluminum and stainless steel and can be attached to all types of rail how even worn rails are. It has four wheels which are adjusted to be entitled to that particular rail that is current for testing of all its wear and asymmetry. The instrument's measuring ability is based on the fact that different weights are deposited in the tester is based on the fact that different weights fall into the test. Depending on the type of train the device should imagine such as passenger train (with or without passengers), freight train or a fully loaded ore train in full throttle as thunder past

–Our unit has a precision unparalleled in the world today since it brings the importance of rain, snow and lubricants available on the rail outside. At present, scientists are referring to very costly laboratory tests with so-called disk-disk devices because they can not take enough into account the actual ambient conditions prevailing in the real world of the railway, delivering totally unrealistic measurements and thus useless metrics for predicting rail wear and friction, says Jan Lundberg.

Jan Lundberg has handed over the patent to the Department of operation, maintenance and acoustics at Luleå University of Technology

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Photo: Richard Renberg

Jan Lundberg

Jan Lundberg, Professor

Phone: +46 (0)920 491748
Organisation: Operation and Maintenance, Operation, Maintenance and Acoustics, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering