ICRI Project: Damage Modelling


Damage Modelling

Damage Modelling

Leaders: Wei Huang, NRC-Canada, Alex Woelfle, NRC-CanadaKlaus Six, Virtual Vehicle and Adam Bevan, Huddersfield University

Contributors: The FRA and CSX

Description: Damage modelling provides a prediction of the fatigue damage growth rate in wheels or rails. Models of this kind are becoming increasingly important for members of the railroad industry who want to predict component failure risk or expected life. To that end, this project supports the development, calibration and validation of damage models by providing realistic wheel/rail contact loading environments.


With the FRA’s funding and CSX data, the NRC used a stochastic simulation approach to recreate the loading environment of two curves. These environments were validated with a pummelling analysis compared to actual photographs and crack depth measurements. The NRC subsequently ran a sensitivity analysis on the loading environment to identify key factors that influence the risk of fatigue damage initiation. A final report covering the loading environment and the sensitivity analysis will be submitted to the FRA during the first quarter of 2022.

Virtual Vehicle and Huddersfield University have developed crack growth models from previous loading environments created by the NRC from different curves. They are currently reviewing the new loading environment data and will investigate how much calibration will be required to make their model work under these new conditions.

Data Package: The loading environment data is available upon demand. Please send your request and related questions to Alexandre Woelfle, NRC-Canada.

Last review:14JUL20, see presentation

Next review: APR 22, ICRI workshop in Ottawa.

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