A numerical investigation of curve squeal in the case of constant wheel/rail friction
Journal article, 2014
Curve squeal is commonly attributed to self-excited vibrations of the railway wheel, which arise due to a large lateral creepage of the wheel tyre on the top of the rail during curving. The phenomenon involves stick/slip oscillations in the wheel/rail contact and is therefore strongly dependent on the prevailing friction conditions. The mechanism causing the instability is, however, still a subject of controversial discussion. Most authors introduce the negative slope of the friction characteristic as a source of the instability, while others have found that squeal can also occur in the case of constant friction due to the coupling between normal and tangential dynamics. As a contribution to this discussion, a detailed model for high-frequency wheel/rail interaction during curving is presented in this paper and evaluated in the case of constant friction. The interaction model is formulated in the time domain and includes the coupling between normal and tangential directions. Track and wheel are described as linear systems using pre-calculated impulse response functions that are derived from detailed finite element models. The nonlinear, non-steady state contact model is based on an influence function method for the elastic half-space. Real measured wheel and rail profiles are used. Numerical results from the interaction model confirm that stick/slip oscillations occur also in the case of constant friction. The choice of the lateral creepage, the value of the friction coefficient and the lateral contact position on the wheel tread are seen to have a strong influence on the occurrence and amplitude of the stick/slip oscillations. The results from the interaction model are in good qualitative agreement with previously published findings on curve squeal.