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Test and Research center for rail vehicle components

As an independent and reliable development and testing centre for rail vehicles, we support manufacturers and suppliers in the development process and assist transport companies with damage analysis and product optimisation. As such, we offer solutions that provide developers and engineers with reliable support in ensuring product and operational safety and quality assurance. As such, we bring together engineers and technicians from several fields of expertise – measurement and control engineering, computing, construction, test design and assessment. Pooling our expertise in this way allows us to harness synergies and create added value for our customers. We aim to provide testing and engineering solutions that help customers to test forward-looking products thoroughly and validate them quickly, while complying with strict legal requirements.

In specific terms, this means that we test and validate bogies, railcar bodies and lots of rail vehicle components in our testing halls, including electrical components. If required, we also uncover structural damage using non-destructive testing techniques, and analyse damage and material properties.

In addition, we conduct measurement runs, assess measured data and use these to define test programmes all over the world. We calculate and create virtual simulations of loads, assess the strength of products and areas of stress, and carry out strength and lifespan assessments. We also provide support for product development, taking strength-related, technological and structural boundary conditions into consideration.

Our portfolio

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Measurements and Measurement Runs

Stresses in real use are recorded by measurements, test drives and continuous monitoring, depending on the application. We carry out measurements of mechanical and electrical quantities under static and dynamic load under operating conditions, install complete measuring chains including process adaptation.

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Simulation and Strength Assessments

As a holistic development partner, we provide reliable information about design and lifetime by determining component strengths and examining stress, strain, and stability already during construction and dimensioning process. By means of calculated assessments of strength, designs are optimized and designed to be reliable.

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Non-destructive testing

We use numerous non-destructive testing methods to investigate the damage during component tests, in the investigation of damage cases, as a tool of quality control and especially for maintenance and repair. Qualified according to ISO 9712 and EN 4179 standards, we carry out testing and inspection activities for almost all sectors, including aviation.

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Electrical Testing

In terms of development and type testing, we offer a comprehensive range of services for accredited tests ranging from short-circuit tests to performance behavior and insulation behavior. Across sectors, we cover the test areas of renewable energies, automotive / e-mobility, rail applications and beyond.

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Materials Testing Metals

Our material specialists accompany you in the implementation of your test programs as well as standardization, approval and certification of materials or manufacturing processes. We stand by your side during the entire test procedure, from the consultation, test planning and sample production, over the test itself up to the finished test report.

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Material Testing for Plastics and Composite Materials

From the base material through the manufacturing technology to the approval of the finished product - our material tests are DAkkS and NADCAP accredited. This includes static, cyclic and dynamic tests as well as static long-term tests, including sample production.

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Materialography

Whether for quality assurance, damage analysis or for research and development - in our accredited materialography laboratories we take a close look at both metallic and non-metallic materials of different composition with qualitative and quantitative characterization methods. This also includes the sample preparation procedures and the analysis, evaluation and documentation of the microscopic examination results.

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Damage analysis

Determining causes and effects experimentally - we assess damage cases and thus support the cause clarification. Our experienced engineers help you to investigate undesirable damage phenomena in detail - for example, by materialography, acoustic damage detection or non-destructive testing methods.

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Medial Load Testing

No matter whether it concerns piping, components, aggregates (pressure generators, pressure consumers) or integrated systems with the use of special media, we determine the behavior under the real driving dynamic loads combined with temperature change, pressure change, volume flow and vibration excitation.

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Materials databases

The databases of our WIAM® product line provide material information and characteristic values ​​that are used reliably for material selection, design, standardization, calculation and simulation. The data pool draws on material and fundamental experiments from the last five decades, and new materials are systematically integrated.

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Training and Seminars

Benefit from our cross-industry know-how: In training courses and seminars directly at your company or at our site, you will receive extensive specialist knowledge - from courses for non-destructive testing (ZfP / NDT) about the FKM guideline "Computational Strength Verification of Machine Components" to software user training for WIAM® fatigue RIFEST.

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Software and Software Solutions

We have solved the management of data and documents from processes in the areas of research and development, simulation and calculation, laboratory, quality management, process development and production planning - with the WIAM® database systems we offer suitable software solutions with flexible data structures, display options and evaluations.

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In terms of material and component testing, you couldn’t be in better hands than with us. Every year, bogies and railcar bodies fill the IMA test halls. They come to Saxony from Europe, America and Asia for experimental tests and approval tests. They are in good company here, with many further rail vehicle components such as axle-bearing housings, springs, swing arms, stabilisers, interior components, and so on and so forth.

 

Strength tests on bogies

Whether you need carrying or motor bogies for locomotives, freight or passenger trains, we offer complete execution of strength testing, including transport and structural analysis, for the approval and development of bogies and bogie frames.

We are an accredited and certified testing centre for approval testing in line with DIN EN 13749 (wheel sets and bogie determination procedures for bogie frame stability requirements) and the UIC regulations for the approval and examination of vehicles in accordance with Section 32 of the Ordinance on the Construction and Operation of Railways (Eisenbahn-Bau- und Betriebsordnung, EBO).

But even during the development and construction phase, our operating load tests, also called dynamic or endurance tests, provide clear readings and reliable results for potential product or manufacturing adjustments. It is important to have fast and reliable partners in the short-term development and procurement phases. With our extensive testing capacity and over 25 years of experience in rail vehicle testing, you are in safe hands. Make the most of our laboratory testing and increase your optimisation potential in relation to subsequent costs.

Our testing options

  • Static or dynamic tests
  • Two- or multiple-axle frames
  • Normal and head-first position
  • Up to 30 load components
  • Ongoing damage control
  • Measurement of strains and deformations, with visual measuring techniques on request
  • All-round IMA service: we offer the full range of additional services that might interest you in our large testing facility, including non-destructive testing, damage analysis, test programme development, measuring runs, FEM analysis, and so on.

Railcar bodies and substructures

Our testing halls are a little bit like being in a train station: a car body drives out, and the next one drives in. Whether we’re looking at double-decker cars, tram cars or middle carriages, our experience in all things strength testing is uniquely extensive, as is our testing capacity. For car body structures, the focus is primarily on structural aspects, manufacturing techniques and lightweight construction. One thing is certain: our specialist areas allow us to support you far beyond the actual laboratory tests. By conducting appropriate measurements, measuring runs and continuous monitoring, we can record stresses that occur during real use. Load assumptions are created and serve as a basis for calculations using the finite elements method (FEM) and our various in-house tests. During the development phase, we make statements about the design of components and give you the chance to compare different types of design. Examining tension, deformation and stability allows us to evaluate their strength and safety.

Testing options

  • Static tests on car bodies in line with standard EN 12663 or other brand-specific standards such as APTA-PR-CS-S-034-99 for the US market.
  • You own load requirements can also be taken into consideration
  • Stuctural loads can be applied using servo-hydraulics or defined weights
  • Longitudinal pressure is applied with servo-hydraulics or high-pressure hydraulic elements at a force of up to 5,000 kN
  • We carry out dynamic testing with 32 servo-hydraulic load components or more
  • Static and dynamic testing of the whole car body at concurrent temperature loads, e.g. up to +75°C

Rail vehicle components

In order to ultimately prove the strength of the components and guarantee their stability, we devote the utmost attention to your railcar components, examining every detail you require and providing optimised testing scenarios. Important factors are your requirements and the present rules.

From test planning to test report

  • Axle-box casings
  • Axle guides
  • Brake components
  • Container bars
  • Crash elements
  • Absorbers
  • Bogie frames
  • Springs
  • Back former carriers
  • Cantilevers
  • Couplings
  • Longitudinal coupling elements
  • Magnetic brake frames
  • Wheel links
  • Traverses
  • Substructures
  • Car bodies
  • Torsion bars
  • Bolsters
  • and many more.