Customers who want to digitally monitor their freight train fleets can do so in an easy and efficient manner by using a solution developed by Schaeffler and Siemens Mobility.
The intelligent axlebox generator innovation project combines the expertise of both companies in the fields of axlebox generators (Schaeffler) and telematic systems (Siemens Mobility), resulting in a digital system for improving transparency and increasing efficiency in rail freight transport.
With a generator integrated into the axlebox bearing housing cover, Schaeffler provides an independent power supply for freight cars. Siemens Mobility uses this independent power supply for its telematics units, which records information about the train during operation, making the data immediately available via a mobile network.
Independent power supply for telematics units using axlebox generators
Freight cars generally do not have their own electrical power supply. Until now, electrical systems in freight cars have mainly been supplied with power from batteries. The available energy quantity is thus limited from the outset, which also limits the systems’ functionality.
With its axlebox generator, Schaeffler is presenting an independent power supply that is flange-mounted to the wheelset and provides an alternative to a supply of power from the locomotive or batteries. The performance of the electronic system is therefore available without restriction. The wear-free generator supplies one watt of power starting from approximately 40 km/h.
The combination of a continuous supply of power and the Controlguide CTmobile telematic system from Siemens Mobility makes additional added-value services, such as condition-based monitoring and immediate data availability possible.
The system is wireless and can easily be retrofitted or replaced. For customers, converting to an intelligent axlebox generator means that the wheelset’s standard components – like the housing, bearing, and axle journals – remain unchanged. Only the housing cover and the axle cover need to be replaced. In addition, the system is maintenance-free.
Sensors for monitoring the wheelset regarding temperatures, vibrations, wear and flat spots on the wheels can be integrated and are currently being developed.
Siemens Mobility offers information about the train in real time
Siemens Mobility’s scope of delivery includes a circuit board integrated into the axlebox bearing housing cover and the CTmobile telematic box installed on the freight car, which records the data and transmits it via a mobile network. In addition, different sensors for parameters such as door openings, load and temperatures can be integrated into the system.
The Schaeffler Group is a global automotive and industrial supplier. By delivering high-precision components and systems in engine, transmission, and chassis applications, as well as rolling and plain bearing solutions for a large number of industrial applications, the Schaeffler Group is already shaping “Mobility for tomorrow” to a significant degree. The technology company generated sales of approximately 14.2 billion euros in 2018. With around 92,500 employees, Schaeffler is one of the world’s largest family companies and, with approximately 170 locations in over 50 countries, has a worldwide network of manufacturing locations, research and development facilities, and sales companies. With more than 2,400 patent registrations in 2018, Schaeffler is Germany’s second-most innovative company according to the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA).