Based on the main conclusions of the synthesis report, UIC started the EuropeTrain project which aimed to investigate the use of noise reducing LL brake blocks regarding LCC and running stability of freight wagons.
Following a German initiative in the 9th meeting of the Directors General of the European Railways in Berlin on September, 5th 2009, 29 railways, the sector organisations CER, EIM and UIC and 8 industry partners supported this pan-European and unique project to speed up and improve LL brake block testing in operations. A special test train has been subjected to an intensive test and monitoring programme throughout Europe.
The project has following objectives:
- to serve as a tool to accelerate the solution process for the problem of equivalent iconicity degradation by reaching enhanced understanding of equivalent iconicity limit values and effects on running behaviour (UIC SET 04/TTI)
- to deliver field experience on the wear of block and wheel with LLblocks(LCC) in the short term and of high quality.
Summarising the results, the following can be stated:
- The block wear in general is mainly influenced by the homogenous nature of the train (i.e. mix of cast iron and composite brake blocks).
- Both block and wheel wear depend strongly on the load spectrum of the wagon in the different runs (i.e. topography, loading status, design of the wagon, braked weight).
- LL-blocks do have a smaller wear than cast iron blocks. The sintered block C952-1 shows under loaded conditions only 21% of the block wear of cast iron, IB116* shows 51% of the value of cast iron.
- For a more accurate calculation of the block wear, fitting to the conditions of the different operators, the data of EuropeTrain are analysed and provided in more detail. So, every operator will be able to adapt the data to his special traffic and calculate the special LCC. A project concerning the analyses of the LCC is started within UIC.
- The main parameters influencing the LCC of wheelsets are the wheel (tread) wear (caused by rolling contact between wheel/rail and by the application of the brakes), the reprofiling interval and the removal of wheel material due to the reprofiling process (cutting depth).
- The use of LL-blocks increases the wheel wear rates. Wear rates are strongly depending on the loading conditions of the wagon and vary strongly between the runs and wagon type.