Year: 2015 - 2018

Tasks:  Structural Engineering, Material Specification & FE Analysis

The world’s first carbon fibre tram to enter revenue service, the CRRC Optics Valley Quantum light rail vehicle was designed and engineered by Fordyno using advanced composite materials. The composite tram will operate in the city of Wuhan in central China’s Hubei Province from March 2019.

As one tram in a fleet of 100, the composite tram has been designed by Fordyno to appear identical to the steel trams that comprise the remainder of the fleet, with the exception of exposed carbon detailing along each side of the composite tram. This consistency introduced several challenges to overcome, including retaining all equipment interfaces and access while completely changing the structural concept.

The composite tram delivers substantial benefits to the customer including:

* Reduced weight that requires less energy to operate and increases the range of the tram when operated wirelessly.

* Improved fatigue life compared to steel tram structures.

* Corrosion resistance.

* Thermal and acoustic insulation integrated into the structure improving passenger comfort.

Fordyno’s services included design and engineering for the project from concept design to testing and commissioning, providing:

* Materials review and selection.

* Options analysis for structural concepts.

* Manufacturability advice including production methods to achieve a high-quality exterior and interior finish.

* Structural engineering and Finite Element Analysis for composites including strength, fatigue and harmonic analysis.

* 3D design and coordination.

* Electrical, fire and thermal design for the composite structure.

* Composite laminate documentation for manufacture.

CRRC revealed the composite tram to the world during the Fourth China (Changchun) Rail Transit Expo in Changchun on September 7, 2018. As the first fully composite rail vehicle to enter service, the tram designed by Fordyno represents a major milestone in the adoption of structural composite materials for the rail industry.

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