A Virtual Laboratory for Pantograph Modelling Identification and Validation

Jose Machado Dos Santos, P Antunes, Joao Pombo, Jose Batista Rebelo, Hugo Pacheco Magalhaes, Jorge Ambrósio

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Rail electrification make use of the interaction between pantograph and Overhead Contact Line (OCL) to provide power to railway vehicles. Advanced computational tools are used to help understanding the restrictions and limitations imposed on the OCL and pantograph systems for reliable operation. The numerical analyses can simplify and decrease the costs of electrification, by reducing the need for expensive on-track testing to ensure compatibility. In this work, a virtual laboratory is developed to validate Multibody (MB) models of pantograph by comparing their frequency response with the experimental results that are gathered in test benches, which are used to obtain the Lumped-Mass (LM) models. As the state-of-the-art solution for pantograph-OCL interaction studies includes the use of MB models, it is important to increase the confidence on these models. The MB methodology frequently requires fine tuning of the modelling parameters to tackle eventual uncertainties associated to the properties of the suspension elements or linking components. The virtual laboratory proposed here enables to do increase the accuracy and validate the MB models by ensuring that the experimental data is accurately represented. The pantograph MB approach allows to overcome the LM limitations, as the parts of the MB model represent the components of the real pantograph, is a fully 3D formulation and allows to consider aerodynamic drag and uplift forces on individual parts.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4.15
Number of pages6
JournalCivil-Comp Conferences
Publication statusPublished - 22 Aug 2022
Event5th International Conference on Railway Technology: Research, Development and Maintenance - Montpellier, France
Duration: 22 Aug 202225 Aug 2022
Conference number: 5


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