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Evaluating Locomotive Fuel Tank Safety and Crashworthiness

[+] Author Affiliations
Stephen Kokkins, Peter Kwok

Foster-Miller, Inc., Waltham, MA

S. K. Punwani, N. Tom Tsai

Federal Railroad Administration, Washington, DC

Paper No. IMECE2002-33255, pp. 181-191; 11 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


This paper describes research work sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration as part of the Train Occupant Protection Program. Locomotive fuel tank strucutural integrity is an extremely important element in providing for crew safety. In the event of train accidents fuel leaks, which can result in a fire, must be prevented. This paper looks at typical train accident scenarios, and deduces the common loading cases that can cause fuel tank penetration. The behavior of a typical fuel tank, compliant with the current AAR RP-506 standard practice, was investigated under these accident loading conditions. Fuel tank wall or plate thickness, material type and strength, corner joint weld size, and baffle support strength were all examined for strength and performance. Using both static and dynamic loading conditions, several parametric design studies were performed to guide the selection of recommended design improvements.

Copyright © 2002 by ASME



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