The project is to systematically assess the state, and thus evaluate, heat transfer functionality from the heater to the points, using the field observations of rail vehicles and manual inspection from the side of the track. This in order to create information basis for alarm at increased risk of inadequate gear heating function in switches.
The aim of the project is to find the improved maintenance map alternating heat functionality in switches. Increased reliability in gear heat leads to reduced energy consumption, improved parts management and warranty tracking, less downtime and better punctuality. All these things give lower costs for contractors, manufacturers and rail operators and the Swedish Transport Administration.
The results show that it is possible in a simple and easy way to determine whether the heaters are working or not. It turned out that about 40% of the exchanges were completed and should be fully operational before the season had defective heater. The rail should be heated to a temperature of about 10 degrees to the ice and snow that falls on the rail efficiently be defrosted. The heating elements provide little different temperature on the rail, depending on how well they fit against the rail. Old radiators often tend to bend slightly, probably because of the repeated thermal expansion cycles, between the mounts the abutment against the rail disappears. This leads to a deterioration of heat dissipation from element to the rail and a lower temperature of the rail. New properly installed heaters provide a very good heat dissipation to the rail that will keep a high temperature. In Figure 1 below shows a gear with relatively new heater where the temperature of the rail is up to + 20C in some areas. A simulated vehicle-mounted equipment also showed that it would be possible to assess the state of alternating heat from service vehicles.
Project leader: Andreas Andersson, Combitech, email@example.com
Project partners: Combitech, Transport Administration, Luleå University of Technology