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PROCEEDINGS OF THE ELEVENTH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON COMPUTATIONAL STRUCTURES TECHNOLOGY
Edited by: B.H.V. Topping
A Three-Dimensional Calculation for Dynamic Pantograph-Catenary Interaction
N. Cuartero1, E. Arias2, T. Rojo2, F. Cuartero2 and P. Tendero2
1Albacete Research Institute of Informatics, Spain
N. Cuartero, E. Arias, T. Rojo, F. Cuartero, P. Tendero, "A Three-Dimensional Calculation for Dynamic Pantograph-Catenary Interaction", in B.H.V. Topping, (Editor), "Proceedings of the Eleventh International Conference on Computational Structures Technology", Civil-Comp Press, Stirlingshire, UK, Paper 138, 2012. doi:10.4203/ccp.99.138
Keywords: three-dimensional model, pantograph-catenary interaction, wind effect, catenary power transmission, curved track, InDiCa tool, high performance implementation.
As a result of the evolution of rail transport all over the world, especially in some European countries, the study of the catenary design process is necessary in order to obtain the optimal configuration. In catenary design, dynamic pantograph-catenary interaction is one of the most critical aspects to consider, so the catenary structure must be designed so that its contact with the pantograph, which is the element fitted to the train that collects power from the catenary, will be optimum. Hence the pantograph-catenary contact force has to be as uniform as possible, avoiding losses of contact, in order to maintain a constant power transmission and achieve high speed.
During recent years, many studies concerning dynamic pantograph-catenary interaction have appeared in the literature (e.g. [1,2,3,4]). However, all these papers have a common feature: they are based on a two-dimensional model, which does not enable weather conditions, such as lateral wind, a very important factor in the study of dynamic pantograph-catenary interaction to be taken into account. The presence of lateral wind can affect the behaviour of the catenary, such as large amplitude oscillations in the wires, and on the catenary-pantograph interaction, which can cause critical situations with respect to the stability of the system.
In this paper a tool is presented, InDiCa 3D, which allows the problem of the lateral wind in the catenary to be resolved and to make calculations for a curved track. This tool is based on a three-dimensional model  and is an improvement of the InDiCa tool . It has been developed following a high performance implementation, in order to obtain a high-quality mathematical software which guarantees a good solution to the problem, because this software tool is currently used by the Spanish administrator of railway infrastructures (ADIF) , in the catenary design process.
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