Sergey Goncharov: Wheel Flange Resizing to Save RUB 5 Bln
25 september 2017
Sergey Goncharov, Deputy CEO for Technical Development – Chief Engineer of Freight One observed that changing the thickness of the freight railcar wheel flange by 1 mm could bring RZD an economic effect of at least RUB 5 bln a year. He made this statement during his report at the meeting of the council of Non-Profit Partnership Association of Railway Equipment Manufacturers (NP OPZT).
“By the results of 2016, 75% railcar setoffs for current repairs were caused by wheelset defects, of which 335 thousand railcars were assigned for repairs due to the wear of the wheel flange. This is progressively growing dynamics entailing significant costs for the participants of the railway freight transportation market in terms of rolling stock repair,” said Sergey Goncharov.
Freight One’s specialists have analyzed the operation of the Company’s 120 own freight railcars with 1442 mm of distance between the wheelset edges and 33 mm flange thickness. After 30 to 40 thou km of run, the flange was worn down to 30 mm. According to Sergey Goncharov, given such a high degree of wear, an amendment to the flange standard will significantly increase the wheelset service life.
“According to our estimates, a decrease of the lower thickness limit of the flange to 24 mm will allow us to reduce the annual number of setoffs by 11%, which is about 34 thousand railcars, and increase the railcar turnover, significantly reduce the infrastructure expenses on track switch maintenance and extend the wheel service life by at least 25%,” added the Chief Engineer of Freight One.
As priority measures to reduce the number of setoffs, Sergey Goncharov suggested making amendments to the regulatory documents to set the flange thickness range between 24 and 33 mm, as well as documents on wheelset formation to set the distance between the edges equal to 1437-1440 mm.
The meeting of the NP OPZT Council, held on September 21 at the Center for Scientific and Technical Information and Libraries of JSC Russian Railways, was attended by executives of the dedicated departments and directorates of Russian Railways, heads of enterprises and public organizations of the railway industry. Participants discussed changes to the geometric dimensions of freight railcar wheelsets, namely changing the rejection criteria basing on flange thickness.