Simulation and optimization of the switch rail forging process

Jakob Martin Becvar

Research output: ThesisMaster's Thesis


voestalpine Railway Systems is a global player in the supply of turnout technologies. One of the key manufacturing processes is forging switch rails, which are tongue rails including a section of a standard rail profile. The manufacturing process for the vignole rail section is to forge it out of the tongue rail profile. The switch rail production is performed at multiple subsidiaries around the world, with a base production technology, but differences in the workflow and production as it depends on the available tools and forging equipment. This thesis aimed to collect know-how about the production of these forged sections during visits to three manufacturing plants as a basis for the simulation of the forging process. Affiliate companies in Austria, Germany and Romania were analyzed. Finite elements and other modern simulations processes are excellent tools for companies to reduce costs in the process development and therefore it was of interest for voestalpine Railway Systems to have a simulation of this production technology available. All simulations require reliable data based on cleanly performed tests. For this reason and to compare the companies, material testing according to the relevant standards was performed. In addition, the inductive heating process was also studied. With the simulation software Simufact Forming, a digital forming process was built with the know-how presented in this thesis. Preliminary simulations were done to prove the accuracy of the simulation.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Montanuniversität
  • Stocker, Erik, Supervisor (external), External person
  • Stockinger, Martin, Supervisor (internal)
Award date30 Jun 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

embargoed until 23-05-2028


  • Umformtechnik
  • Werkstoffwissenschaften
  • Simulation
  • Metal Froming
  • Material Science
  • Simufact

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