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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Side Impact Test and Analyses of a DOT-105 Tank Car – 6 X 6 Inch Indenter

Document Series
Technical Reports
Federal Railroad Administration
Report Number
Subject Hazardous Materials
Impact test, DOT-105 tank car, tank car performance, transportation safety, toxic by inhalation, TIH, finite element analysis, FEA, hazardous materials

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) conducted a side impact test on a DOT-105 tank car at the Transportation Technology Center (TTC) to evaluate its performance under dynamic impact conditions and to provide data for the verification and refinement of a computational model. The tank car was filled with water to approximately 89.5 percent of its volume and pressurized to 100 psi. A 296,775-pound ram car equipped with a 6- by 6-inch indenter struck the tank car at 9.7 mph. The ram car impacted the tank center; puncturing the tank after slowing nearly to a stop. The Volpe National Transportation Systems Center (Volpe) performed finite element (FE) modeling to estimate the overall response of the tank to the impact. The pre-test model used two different material models for the steel in the tank car shell. The pre-test model that used a lower-ductility material response was found to be in good agreement with the test results. After the test, material coupons were cut from the car and subjected to tensile testing. The post-test FE model was updated to include the actual material behavior of the test car, and continued to be in good agreement with the test measurements. The test data is intended to be useful to entities who wish to develop FE models of tank cars under similar puncture conditions in their modeling validation and verification efforts.

Last updated: Monday, October 5, 2020