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Railway Materials Engineering Services

Railway Materials Engineering Services

The Right Experts for All Your Railway Engineering Questions

With new, state-of-the-art railcars and locomotives being developed, railway operators are increasingly having to update their technology and engineering – for a cleaner, more comfortable and climate-friendly mode of transportation. The TÜV Rheinland Rail Sciences' Materials Engineering Laboratory has a highly specialized professional engineering staff whose experience encompasses several engineering disciplines, including metallurgical, mechanical, and electrical engineering.

Our licensed metallurgical and mechanical engineers can provide independent expert opinion on a variety of projects, including component failures, material quality, accident reconstruction, and manufacturing processes. TÜV Rheinland is fully equipped to evaluate your railway technology in compliance with material standards, including ASTM, NIST, SAE, ANSI, ASM, and ISO standards.

We can physically and computationally test your component to give you the complete analysis you need.

Benefits at a Glance

With TÜV Rheinland as your partner for railway materials engineering services, you:

  • Can count on immediate, on-site engineering support
  • Have your components or materials tested to meet published standards or customers' internal standards
  • Are able to implement action recommendations – based on reliable inspections of failed components – to help prevent future failures
  • Rely on the FEA method, a powerful and versatile tool with a wide range of applications, which is also more cost-effective than real-world, physical testing
  • Meet legal and industry-specific requirements
  • Work with a team of highly qualified inspectors with years of experience and expertise
  • Get comprehensive support from a single source

Testing Methods

Not only is TÜV Rheinland a fully equipped materials testing laboratory; we are also a professional and experienced Finite Element Analysis (FEA) company. TÜV Rheinland has experience with two different FEA Programs, LS-DYNA and COSMOS. That means we can physically and computationally test your component to give you the complete analysis you need.

Our Approach

TÜV Rheinland offers a comprehensive, yet flexible, consultation package. Listed below are the standard operating procedures we follow for project analysis:

  • Define the problem (for example, failure analysis, material assessment, metallurgical testing, etc.)
  • Recommend the best course of action for analysis
  • Comprehensive testing using an extensive array of state-of-the-art laboratory equipment
  • Reporting of investigation results in client-specified formats
  • Acting as expert witness (where required)
  • Solution recommendations (where required)

Our Testing Services

Our services are tailored to meet your needs in the following areas:

  • Failure analysis
  • Physical testing
  • Computational modeling
  • Material selection
  • Design evaluation
  • Machine design

As part of our portfolio for railway materials engineering services, TÜV Rheinland can perform:

  • Metallurgical evaluations
  • Failure analysis
  • Heat treatment evaluation
  • Supplier validation
  • Statistical trending
  • Hardness testing
  • Non-destructive testing
  • Spectrographic analysis
  • Scanning electron microscopy
  • Corrosion analysis
  • Tensile testing
  • Product testing
  • Independent third party certification
  • Life cycle cost analysis
  • Quality assurance
  • Machine design

Finite Element Analysis (FEA)

Finite element analysis (FEA) is a computational modeling method that discretizes a complicated component geometry into simple, manageable "finite elements". This allows for easy calculation of stresses and strains.

FEA also allows for various different designs under varying load scenarios to be tested without the time and expense of full-scale physical testing. Not only can FEA help cut costs and development time; it can also be used as a failure analysis tool to help determine root causes of failures.

FEA models are also helpful with litigation due to their descriptive and easily understood plots of stresses.



LS-DYNA is an extremely powerful non-linear, explicit finite element-modeling program and is capable of modeling complicated "real-world" problems that other FEA programs have difficulty with. Most notably, it has the ability to handle non-linear problems, such as material plastic deformation. Listed below are a few examples where LS-DYNA can be applied:

  • Crashworthiness of vehicles
  • Automobiles
  • Locomotives / railcars
  • High-velocity impacts
  • Material plastic deformation
  • Sheet metal forming with springback
  • Drop testing
  • Airbag inflation and impact
  • Human body dynamics from impact
  • Solid / fluid interactions
  • Explosions and resulting damage


When less complex problems are addressed, COSMOS is the FEA program of choice. It is very quick and is paired with Solidworks, a 3D CAD Program. This allows for more efficient analysis and revisions. COSMOS focuses on the following:

  • Static structural analysis
  • Vibration and natural frequency analysis
  • Buckling analysis
  • Heat transfer
  • Steady-state
  • Transient
  • Fluid flow dynamic

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Get in contact with us!

Get in contact with us!