Assessment of non-Hertzian wheel-rail contact models for numerical simulation of rail damages in switch panel of railway turnout
Abstract Rail damages in railway turnout switch panels are closely related to the complicated wheel-rail contact conditions in the turnouts. In order to assess the applicability of different non-Hertzian contact models for simulating rail damages in railway turnout switch panel, three engineering approaches, i.e. Kik-Piotrowski, Ayasse-Chollet and Sichani, are adopted to simulate rail wear and surface initiated rolling contact fatigue (RCF) damages by studying a Chinese CN60-1100-1:18 high-speed turnout switch panel. A comparison is then carried out taking into account the results calculated by Kalker’s three-dimensional (3D) theory and an elastic-plastic FEM (Finite Element Method) model. The analyzed results show that the computational efficiencies of the three engineering approaches are all quite high for simulating rail damages in switch panel. Under elastic conditions, the calculation accuracy of the Sichani approach is found to be the highest, meaning that this would appear to be the preferred method for simulating rail damages in railway turnout switch panel. The research findings can be taken as theoretical guidance for selecting wheel-rail contact models and analyzing these types of damages in railway turnout switch panels.