Reducing Rail Vehicle Component Weight by 24%

Challenge
As a market leader in rail vehicles design and manufacture, Bombardier Transportation needed a solution to develop the optimum structural design for vehicle components, taking weight, strength and durability into account. Although the existing designs were extremely successful, a more efficient design offered an opportunity to improve performance and enhance operator satisfaction.

Solution
Altair ProductDesign’s engineers worked closely with Bombardier Transportation to integrate the optimization technology within the HyperWorks suite of simulation solutions, into their existing development programs. By targeting a number of key rail vehicle components identified as having the greatest potential for weight saving, a new simulation driven design process was developed to drive down mass while retaining the required performance characteristics.

Result
This ongoing engineering initiative has been a great success for Bombardier Transportation where engineers have successfully reduced mass and material from a wide range of rail vehicle components without compromise to safety or performance. As an example of the results, the jointly developed design process and knowledge exchange program achieved a 24% weight saving for a coupler casting and a new yaw damper casting achieved a 37% reduction in weight while simultaneously increasing component stiffness by 9% and reducing peak stress by 10%.

 

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