Active control of railway vehicle dynamics offers an enormous and so far unexploited potential for enhancements regarding safety and comfort. It additionally allows for reducing energy consumption, noise emission and wear as well as life cycle costs.
This potential motivates research and development of a mechatronic low-floor running gear with independently rotating wheels, for which an experimental design study is tested and validated at our scale 1:5 roller rig.
These activities contribute to the DLR research project Next Generation Train, which deals with concepts, methods, and technologies for a very high speed train in double deck con figuration and lightweight design. The concept is targeted on sustainability and protection of natural resources. These key features impose major challenges only to be met by elaborate dynamical design studies, which intensively utilize simulation and optimization, and by relying on the application of mechatronic vehicle systems.
Our goal is the feedback control of all running gear functions such as track guidance, primary and secondary suspensions, traction drives, and brakes on the basis of an integrated strategy. In addition, all subsystems of the trainset will be crosslinked in order to gain further synergy effects. Therefore, we are developing appropriate tools to support the analysis, the design, and the implementation of such systems.