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Title: Economic and Technical Feasibility of a Robotic Autonomous System for Train Fluid Servicing
Authors: Atherton, M
Hill, S
Harrison, D
Ajovalsit, M
Keywords: Train servicing;vehicle fluids;robots;maintenance workshops;hierarchical task analysis
Issue Date: 2019
Publisher: SAGE
Citation: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part F: Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit
Abstract: Rail traffic in passenger miles is projected to increase by 100% over the next 30 years, which presents a considerable challenge for the current infrastructure to perform the regular fluid servicing tasks. Developing robotic autonomous systems for train fluid servicing is a prospect for which no solutions currently exist. Therefore, the economic and technical feasibility of a robotic autonomous system (RAS) to perform several key fluid servicing tasks on passenger train vehicles is investigated. The fluid servicing tasks chosen include those that to a significant degree are repetitive or hazardous for humans to perform, and therefore if performed by a RAS will release service personnel to focus on more suitable tasks. The economic and technical cases presented strongly support the use of a RAS for fluid servicing of trains. Generally available RAS technology has reached a state of development capable of delivering what is required once reliable couplings and fluid hose technologies have been developed for this application. Overall, the findings are that fluid servicing capacity will at least double for around 15% of the cost of an equivalent manual servicing facility, which represents a substantially attractive business case. There will be modest technical challenges to be overcome that will add unknown cost elements such as modifications to vehicle fluid ports for RAS compatibility, and development of long power hoses.
ISSN: 0954-4097
Appears in Collections:Dept of Mechanical Aerospace and Civil Engineering Research Papers

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