Title: Effect of different surface profile on wear of rail steel (AS1085.1) used in Australian heavy-haul railways

Authors: Asitha C. Athukorala; Isuru U. Wickramasinghe; Dennis V. De Pellegrin

Addresses: Chemistry, Physics, Mechanical Engineering Department, Science and Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QLD 4000, Australia ' Chemistry, Physics, Mechanical Engineering Department, Science and Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QLD 4000, Australia ' Chemistry, Physics, Mechanical Engineering Department, Science and Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QLD 4000, Australia

Abstract: The extreme diversity of conditions acting on railways necessitates a variety of experimental approaches to study the critical wear mechanisms that present themselves at the contact interface. This work investigates the effects of contact pressure and geometry in rolling-contact wear tests by using discs with different radii of curvature to simulate the varying contact conditions that may be typically found in the field. It is commonly adapted to line contact interface as it has constant contact pressure. But practical scenario of the rail wheel interface, the contact area increase and contact pressure change as tracks worn off. The tests were conducted without any significant amount of traction, but micro slip was still observed due to contact deformation. Moreover, variation of contact pressure was observed due to contact patch elongation and diameter reduction. Rolling contact fatigue, adhesive and sliding wear were observed on the curved contact interface. The development of different wear regimes and material removal phenomena were analysed using microscopic images in order to broaden the understanding of the wear mechanisms occurring in the rail-wheel contact.

Keywords: rolling contact fatigue; adhesive wear; sliding wear; twin disc; hardened rail; wear rate; surface roughness; surface profile; rail steel; Australia; heavy-haul railways; contact pressure; geometry; rail wheel interface; micro slip; contact deformation; material removal.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMATEI.2015.072848

International Journal of Materials Engineering Innovation, 2015 Vol.6 No.4, pp.225 - 242

Available online: 04 Nov 2015 *

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