Improving Aerodynamic Performance of Angel Trains Rolling Stock
Aerodynamics can contribute significantly to vehicle efficiency, with aerodynamic drag contributing to a majority of vehicle energy losses at high speeds. There is considerable interest in aerodynamics in the rail industry, as the reduction of aerodynamic drag is a major factor in improving vehicle fuel efficiency.
Angel Trains, a British rolling stock company, wanted to identify if they could improve the aerodynamic performance of their diesel multiple unit (DMU) train fleet by implementing intercarriage fairings, which are aerodynamic surfaces that eliminate the gaps between carriages.
Some previous studies into train aerodynamics suggested that intercarriage fairings may improve vehicle efficiency by reducing aerodynamic pressure drag originating at the inter-coach cavity.
We determined the vehicle drag at a range of speeds representing a typical daily route for the vehicle. By assessing the difference in drag between the original configuration and the intercarriage fairing configuration, we were able to calculate an approximate fuel saving per day for the vehicle.
“Through the modelling completed during this project we were able to assess if costly physical modification and experimentation was worth pursuing on our fleet of trains to bring an environmental and financial benefit to our customers”
Systems engineer, ANGEL TRAINS
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