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EURAXLES: Minimizing the risk of fatigue failure of railway axles


EURAXLES is a 3 year R&D project uniting 23 partners across Europe including 6 axle manufacturers, 4 railway operators/IMs, 2 system integrators, 3 technology suppliers, 5 universities, 2 rail sector associations and 1 consulting firm. The consortium is well-positioned to provide a common R&D approach to axle design, protection, inspection and maintenance which will have an impact on standards, regulations and on the market. EURAXLES aims to develop innovative, safer solutions for railway wheelsets with improved reliability in a cost effective way. The research is summarized below.
1. A design approach will be developed, including a risk analysis method which could offer a simple design route by combining loads with difference occurrences including loading specificity of vehicles and service conditions together with the axles resistances, including new materials and methods in order to predict the ‘failure probability’.
2. New developments will also include (i) improved axle protection against corrosion, including protection of already corroded axles; (ii) improved adhesion of coatings with a study of the roughness influence (adhesion and fatigue behavior); and (iii) new, innovative coating solutions. The new solutions will also aim to fulfill environmental requirements to avoid or limit VOC emissions.
3. New/improved NDT inspection methods will allow the in-service inspection of axles in order to guarantee safe service conditions with a low impact on the vehicle availability.
4. A RAMS/LCC analysis of the solutions will be carried out. The railway transportation system requires a risk analysis of the safety components. Activities will improve design validation and inspection technologies of axles which will optimise costs, safety and environmental compliance to be shown with RAMS/LCC analyses.
Results will be disseminated to the different stakeholders and the European standards/regulations for railway axles and wheelsets will be improved across Europe.

Call for proposal

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Région de Bruxelles-Capitale/Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest Région de Bruxelles-Capitale/ Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest Arr. de Bruxelles-Capitale/Arr. Brussel-Hoofdstad
Activity type
Administrative Contact
Léa Paties (Ms.)
EU contribution
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Participants (23)