Liquefied natural gas tender crashworthiness research
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Liquefied natural gas tender crashworthiness research

Filetype[PDF-1.26 MB]

  • English

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    • Alternative Title:
      Proceedings of the ASME IEEE ASCE 2015 Joint Rail Conference
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    • Abstract:
      Research is being conducted to develop technical

      information needed to formulate effective natural gas fuel

      tender crashworthiness standards. This research is being

      performed for the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA’s)

      Office of Research, Development, and Technology, and

      intended to facilitate industry efforts to use natural gas as a

      locomotive fuel. Strategies to assure crashworthiness during

      moderate accidents, such as train-to-train collisions at speeds

      up to 40 mph, are being evaluated.

      This research applies the approach FRA has used to

      develop technical information on locomotive, hazmat tank car,

      and diesel fuel tank crashworthiness. There are four primary


      1. Definition of collision scenarios

      2. Evaluation of traditional designs

      3. Evaluation of alternative designs

      4. Recommendation of effective crashworthiness strategies

      The tender scenarios have been drafted from reviews of

      freight train accidents and of scenarios developed for

      locomotives, hazmat tank cars, and fuel tanks. From these

      reviews, five scenarios were selected. These scenarios are

      intended to bound the range of collisions that a tender may

      experience, are being used to evaluate the crashworthiness of

      traditional tender designs, and will be used to evaluate

      alternative design tenders. The five candidate scenarios are:

      1. Train-to-train collision

      2. Grade-crossing accident

      3. Tender derailment and rollover

      4. Impact into tender tank shell during derailment

      5. Impact into tender tank head during derailment

      As part of previous research on locomotives and passenger

      equipment, a range of crashworthiness analysis techniques

      were developed. These include simplified techniques, which

      can be performed rapidly and provide essential results, and

      detailed computer simulations which provide a wealth of

      information. The crashworthiness performance of a

      hypothetical tender design has been evaluated using simplified

      techniques. Simplified techniques include quasi-static crush

      analysis of structural elements and lumped-parameter analysis

      of train dynamics. The results suggest that efforts to enhance

      crashworthiness should principally be directed toward the trainto-

      train scenario. Work is ongoing to develop strategies for

      improving tender crashworthiness.

      This research is being conducted cooperatively with the

      Association of American Railroads (AAR). The research

      results are being shared with the AAR’s Natural Gas Fuel

      Tender Technical Advisory Group (NGFT TAG). The NGFT

      TAG is developing industry standards, including

      crashworthiness requirements, for revenue-service natural gas

      fuel tenders. There is a companion paper which describes

      crashworthiness research sponsored by AAR, including

      detailed computer simulations of tender crashworthiness. This

      paper describes development of scenarios and simplified

      analyses of tender crashworthiness.

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