Rail-wheel contact and tribology

Sheffield's longest established area of railway research. Safety critical and taking materials to their limits, optimising rail-wheel interface performance is crucial to the running of a railway.

Wheels, bogie and suspension, suburban emu

The contact of steel wheel on steel rail is fundamental to railway operation, but it pushes rail and wheel materials to their limit. It’s safety critical with all traction and braking forces transmitted through it, it controls train dynamics and requires the performance of a precision rolling element bearing, yet it’s open to rain, snow and contamination. Learn about projects tackling these challenges here. 


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