ENGINEERS at the Taiyuan Railway Research Institute of Science & Technology in China have developed a system that uses image processing to measure wheel profiles in motion at speeds between 3 km/h and 6 km/h. Activated by a photoelectric switch, the trackside system illuminates the wheel with a slit light source and uses an industrial TV camera to obtain an image of the flange and tread.

This image is processed using software specially developed by the Institute. Calculating the centre line of the flange and tread, the system produces a profile of the wheel which is compared with a standard profile to determine the degree of tread wear. Data including the flange height and thickness can be printed out, and the system will generate an alarm signal if the wheel falls below established wear parameters.

Taiyuan Railway Research Institute of Science & Technology, China

Reader Enquiry Number 145