The Educational Railroading Conference Leader Since 1994


L. B. Foster Abstract:

Economic optimisation strategies for Friction Management implementations.

In todays environment railway operators are challenged to maintain, operate and/or sometimes even extend the number of wayside friction management units despite continuously shrinking maintenance budgets. Typical cost saving measures will aim at reducing the price per volume for the consumable product (GF grease, TOR friction modifier) without considering other adverse economic impacts of such a low-cost-consumable strategy.

The Cost per Treated Mile (CPTM) model can be utilized to comprehensively identify improvement areas with respect to existing and new FM implementations. Instead of only considering the volume price for a specific consumable product, more relevant factors like unit uptime, carry down performance, unit spacing, equipment reliability and maintainability will also be included in the economic considerations.

This Infozone will analyze the different cost factors for FM implementations based on the CPTM model. Real life scenarios will be discussed to highlight obvious and hidden cost drivers as well as to identify missed FM benefits. Finally, suitable solutions strategies for cost optimisation in relation to the overall budget associated with FM maintenance and operation will be provided.