Working performance with the tCat

The tCat allows a fast, agile and automated measurement of the main geometric parameters of the overhead contact line.

In this month’s article we aim to analyse the measurement performance with tCat for a campaign that we have defined as “typical”. That is a campaign in which we have tried to make its execution conditions as similar as possible to those most frequently encountered in the railway environment, whether in the context of works or maintenance:

  • Measurements taken during a night-shift maintenance period.
  • Presence of areas with rigid catenary interspersed with sections with flexible catenary systems.
  • Outdoor environment and in tunnels.
  • Measurements on supports (under masts).

The key points of this campaign can be summarised in the following list:

  • Total time: 3:21:58
  • Travelled distance: 9056 m
  • Number of measurements (profiles): 423
  • Number of spans: 211
  • Average measurement spacing: 21.41 m

In the graph below we analyse the average forward speed. On the X axis we have the time (in minutes) elapsed since the start of the campaign, while the Y axis represents the kilometric point associated with that instant of time. For example, we can see that, 40 minutes after the start of the campaign, the tCat is approximately at KP 3+000 and has travelled just over 1 kilometre.

A linear fit to the sampled pairs of values – which can be extracted from the tCat’s exportable data set – gives an average forward speed of 45.87 m/min (2.75 km/h) for this campaign.

“Based on this detailed study, it is possible to ensure a measurement yield with the tCat of around 3 km/h, which is far superior to other conventionally used means such as laser gauges or manual pantographs”.

This measurement performance also takes into account the time it takes to launch and record a measurement, once it is stationary at the point of interest (e.g. under support or centre of span).

“The tCat employs a Stop & Go operating procedure for the automated calculation of geometric parameters of the railway infrastructure.”

If we analyse the on-field measuring times at the point of interest in a histogram like the one in the figure below, we can appreciate that the most frequent ones are in the range between 7 and 9 seconds. In other words, the field user is able to complete an accurate measurement in this short time and can then move to the next sampling point by pushing the tCat onto the track.

“Measurements contained in histogram: 396/421 (94%)”.

By |2021-11-10T12:11:44+00:00November 9th, 2021|Business Cases, , Events, News, All|
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