China Energy Fills in the Domestic Blank of Freight Train ‘Condition-based Maintenance’

from:China Energy Investment Corporationdate:2020-04-23

Recently, China Energy Investment Corporation fully put its HCCBM system into trial operation, marking that the overhauling of the corporation’s freight trains shifted from the traditional mode of “planned maintenance” to a mode of “condition-based maintenance.” The new system filled in a technical blank in China’s freight train maintenance and repair sector, achieving a transition from “periodic maintenance” to “targeted maintenance.” It can not only save time and economic costs for freight train maintenance, but also greatly improve China’s railway transport efficiency and accelerate the supply-side structural reform of railway transportation.

China Energy boasts the country’s largest reserve of professional railway mobile equipment and has long been committed to promoting the reform to break through traditional planned maintenance standards and models and explore a new decision-making model of freight train intelligent overhauling based on their “health conditions.” At the beginning of 2018, China Energy approved the relevant R&D project, and its railway equipment company cooperated with dozens of research institutions including China Academy of Railway Sciences, Beijing Jiaotong University, Southwest Jiaotong University, CRRC, Harbin Institute of Science and Technology, and JTV to jointly launch a survey on the freight train maintenance and repair sector. They completed the formulation of the technical standards for “condition-based” maintenance of freight trains and established the HCCBM system that can conduct real-time monitoring and tracking of the health conditions of freight trains in operation, based on which repairers can determine train maintenance procedures and items to be repaired. Through big data analysis, the diagnosis model can repeatedly recalibrate and improve itself in the maintenance process.

Preliminary estimates show that the maintenance cost of a freight train in its full life cycle can be reduced by at least 20 percent when the mode of “planned maintenance” is replaced by “condition-based maintenance.” In the future, with the popularity of “condition-based maintenance,” the operational modes and landscape of freight train maintenance will see profound changes. Not only will labor costs for train maintenance drop drastically and the quality of freight train operations be improved, but the train turnover efficiency and railway transportation efficiency will be substantially enhanced.

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