Temperatures at railway tread braking. Part 3: wheel and block temperatures and the influence of rail chill
Journal article, 2007

Tread braking generates high temperatures in railway wheels and brake blocks as the kinetic energy of the running train is transformed into heat. The temperatures induced in the components are here analysed with particular focus on the cooling influence from the rolling contact between the hot wheel and a cold rail. Controlled brake rig tests are reported, where the rolling contact is studied using a so-called rail-wheel in contact with the braked wheel, along with results from field tests. The data from these experimental studies are used for calibration of a simulation tool for calculation of wheel and block temperatures. The calibrated model analyses heat partitioning between block, wheel and rail and finds the resulting temperatures at braking. The rail chill is found to have a considerable influence on the wheel temperatures for long drag braking cycles. A successful calibration of the model using data from field tests is also reported.

freight trains

brake blocks

rail chill

tread braking


brake shoes


Tore V Vernersson


Roger Lundén


Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit

Vol. 221 4 443-454

Subject Categories

Vehicle Engineering

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