Sharma & Associates, Inc.

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Locomotive Projects

Engineering of Locomotive Retrofit

Engineering of Locomotive Retrofit
(FEA - Locomotive Underframe)

Crashworthiness Design and Evaluation of Cab, Under frame, and, Fuel Tank

Crashworthiness Design and Evaluation of Cab, Under frame, and Fuel Tank

FEA of Locomotive for Weight Reduction for Chilean Railways

Locomotive Weight Reduction for Chilean Railways

Locomotive Cooling System Design

Engineering Design of New Locomotive Underframe and Cooling System

Structural Evaluation of Locomotive Cooling Hood

Structural Evaluation of Locomotive Cooling Hood

Locomotive Test Articles for Full-Scale Collision Testing

Locomotive Test Articles for Full-Scale Collision Testing

           

Engineering of Locomotive Retrofit (FEA - Locomotive Underframe)

Locomotive Underframe FEA


SA provided the concept development, structural engineering, design, drawings, and documentation to support the installation and successful operation of a US built 16 cylinder 3000 HP engine, alternator and auxillary generator, cooling hood, equipment rack, air compressor and inertial hatch onto a Russian built locomotive underframe.  Subsequent to successful production, evaluation and certification of the first prototype unit, several more have been produced.  An initial production run of 24 units is planned.


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Locomotive Underframe FEA


Crashworthiness Design and Evaluation of Cab, Under frame, and Fuel Tank

Locomotive Crashworthiness Design

Locomotive Crashworthiness Design


Brookville Equipment Corporation has started delivery of its brand new BL20GH locomotives to Connecticut DOT and MTA Metro-North RR.  These versatile units will be used in various services including work train, branch line passenger and rescue operations, and offer higher fuel efficiency and reduced exhaust emissions compared to conventional units.  These locomotives use 2,250 hp engines that are EPA Tier 2 certified, and can operate at speeds up to 79 mph.

SA helped design and evaluate the crashworthiness of the BL20GH’s operator cab, underframe, and fuel tank. These units are among the first narrow nose locomotives to meet Federal, APTA and AAR standards for locomotive crashworthiness, mandated for 2009.  These standards are designed to promote the safety of locomotive cab operators and occupants in the event of a locomotive collision.  The project covered the design & performance of collision posts, corner posts, anti-climbers, roof structure, etc.  Extensive finite element modeling featuring non-linear material models, combined with effective design principles and practical engineering, make this another hallmark SA project.


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Locomotive Crashworthiness Design

Locomotive Crashworthiness Design


Locomotive Weight Reduction for Chilean Railways

Chilean FEA


The objective of this project was to perform structural analysis of a GP40 underframe and identify opportunities for weight reduction by removing structural material from the underframe, without compromising its strength.  The need to reduce weight was driven by the axle load limits on bridges on one of the operating routes owned by the railroads.

To meet the objective of this project, a finite element analysis of the GP40 underframe was conducted using ANSYS to develop an understanding of the overall stress field in the structure components. The stress levels were used to identify the regions of underframe structure with low stresses where material could be removed. After the identified material was removed, the underframe was re-analyzed for modified stress levels to ensure that stresses were within the acceptable limits. Once the stresses were confirmed to be acceptable, manufacturing drawings were prepared.

The analysis and redesign was able to achieve the weight reduction goal and allow the customer to proceed with retrofit of the locomotives and operate them on intended route.


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Chilean FEA


Engineering Design of New Locomotive Underframe and Cooling System

Locomotive Cooling System Design


A locomotive rebuilder approached SA to provide the engineering for design, drawings, documentation, and fabrication support for the development of a new underframe for an energy efficient, low emissions locomotive designed for road switching operations.

In addition to structural design, this work included suitable cooling/airflow analysis to ensure optimum cooling to all primary electrical components including traction motors, DC choppers, electrical cabinet, etc.  This included sizing of the blower motors, design of duct work, and design of all needed framing elements.


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Locomotive Cooling System Design


Structural Evaluation of Locomotive Cooling Hood

FEA of cooling hood


A cooling hood is a frame type structure, generally at the rear of the locomotive, that houses components such as radiators, fans, piping, and related equipment, that help dissipate heat from the prime mover and related components. One of SA customers requested finite element analysis (FEA) of a cooling hood for adequacy of the structural strength. The customer also provided a CAD model of their cooling hood design, a list of components, corresponding material properties, and component weights.

Appropriate load cases and the corresponding boundary conditions were determined, and structural analyses were conducted using the FE solver OptiStruct. In consultation with the customer, appropriate changes were incorporated into the FE model, and the structure was re-analyzed to ensure that the changes were effective. The analysis indicated that the revised structure met the required criteria and was capable of withstanding the applied load environment.


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Locomotive Test Articles for Full-Scale Collision Testing

Locomotive Test Article

Locomotive Test Article


An objective of this program was to test the S-580 standard for locomotive crashworthiness.  SA’s responsibility/task was to acquire or build two locomotives for collision testing.  Detailed finite element models of the locomotive for crashworthiness analysis using LS-DYNA were also to be developed.

To meet the project objectives, SA procured two older SD45T-2 locomotives, removed the short-hood and cab structures from them and installed two new SD70M short-hood and cab structures onto the SD45T-2 underframes.  The necessary engineering calculations were carried out and drawings created to ensure that the new structure would meet S-580 standards.  Proper placement of the cabs onto the under-frames was done to ensure proper location of the collision posts over the underframes’ supporting structures.

This work entailed development of CAD drawings, the securing of a facility to do the work, and coordination with the suppliers of the equipment, the fabrication facility and the Transportation Technology Center, where the collision testing took place.


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Locomotive Test Article

Locomotive Test Article