This paper presents an approach to modeling an oblique collision of a locomotive and an intermodal container. Previous studies of offset and oblique train collisions have used one and two-dimensional models to determine the trajectories of the equipment during the collision (Mayville, et al. 1995, Tyrell, et al, 1997). This analysis uses a three-dimensional model to determine the trajectories of the equipment.

In the collision scenario of concern, an intermodal container impacts the outboard corner of the short hood of a wide-nose locomotive above the deck. An impact element has been used in the collision dynamics model to transfer contact load to the short hood of the locomotive. A detailed non-linear finite element model has been developed to characterize the force-crush behavior of the short hood. These results determine the parameters that connect the impact element to three-dimensional lumped-masses that represent vehicles in the consist. The collision dynamics analysis includes the influence of the locomotive suspension and the trailing locomotive.

The model has been used to evaluate the influence of short hood design on intrusion into the operator’s cab, the deceleration of the locomotive during the collision, and whether derailment of the locomotive occurs as a consequence of the collision. Results indicate that short hood strength can be increased significantly above the strength of the current design without derailing the locomotive in this collision scenario. More short hood strength increases the maximum closing speed that can be sustained without intrusion into the operator’s cab, while the deceleration of the operator’s cab remains relatively low.

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