Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >

The Advanced Handbrake Actuator System

[+] Author Affiliations
Joram Shenhar, John L. Hill, III, Mark A. Lombardo

UTD, Inc., Manassas, VA

Paper No. IMECE2002-33244, pp. 85-93; 9 pages
  • ASME 2002 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Rail Transportation
  • New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, November 17–22, 2002
  • Conference Sponsors: Rail Transportation Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3646-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-1691-5, 0-7918-1692-3, 0-7918-1693-1
  • Copyright © 2002 by ASME


State-of-the-art freight car handbrakes are manpower intensive. Setting and releasing handbrakes expose operators to safety hazards and the potential for human error exposes train operations for possible time delays, mild to severe maintenance issues and ultimately the potential for major rail accidents. In response to the need to reduce the hazard associated with freight car handbrakes, UTD has developed the Advanced Handbrake Actuator System (AHAS), a fail-safe powered handbrake device, accessible from ground level on either side of the car. The AHAS concept was developed, manufactured and demonstrated under sponsorship of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The system is designed to replace existing handbrake wheels and provide significant improvements by offering new ways of applying or releasing the brake. Remote electronic signal, car mounted hand levered pneumatic valve, and a manual hand crank mechanism, requiring significantly less effort than that required by the state-of-the-art handbrake wheel, constitute three methods of actuation. The AHAS is comprised of a compression coil spring arranged to apply tension to the handbrake chain as its default condition. Two release systems are available. The first uses an air cylinder actuator connected in series with the spring and chain. Applying air pressure by remote or local command will compress the spring and release the handbrake. The spring may also be compressed to release the handbrake by a hand crank mechanism, accessible from ground level on either side of the car. The AHAS is equipped with a dedicated air reservoir charged with compressed air prior to departure via the train’s brake pipe. The AHAS was successfully field tested on a freight car in regular service over a period of three months and was found to be user friendly and safe, logging over 120 successful operations.

Copyright © 2002 by ASME
Topics: Actuators



Interactive Graphics


Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature

Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal

Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In