An analysis of the mechanics and dynamics of a railroad vehicle wheelset during flange contact and wheelclimb derailment is presented. The theoretical model includes wheelset lateral, vertical, roll, yaw, and axle rotation degrees of freedom, plus lateral displacement of the truck frame. The equations of motion are based on the kinematics and dynamics of the wheelset subject to constraints imposed by wheel/rail contact geometry. These constraints are used to compute creepages and normal forces at the wheel/rail contact points, needed as inputs to the Kalker Simplified Theory of rolling contact. Computational methods for simulation of the nonlinear dynamic model are discussed. Results of the simulation demonstrate the significance of the various degrees of freedom on wheelset motion and on predicted values of the derailment quotient (Q/P).

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