Project Structure

Under the Seventh Framework Programme (theme SST.2011.2.5-1, Rail system interoperability [regulatory and non-legislative interoperability based on technological innovations]), ACOUTRAIN is a project with a duration of 36 months. The project was kicked-off on the 11th of October, 2011 in Brussels.


 WP1: Procedures for a virtual certification of acoustic performances of freight and passenger trains
This work package (WP) is dedicated to define the process for a noise virtual certification. The virtual process will be focused on pass-by assessment. Source characterization will be carried out by calculations or using measurement of stationary vehicles. The proposed process will primarily be defined using present TSI requirements, and will try to detail the simplified evaluation method introduced by the partial revision of the TSI. It will also reduce the cost and duration of the present procedure (which is based exclusively on in-situ measurements), while maintaining the reliability.
Moreover, certified measurement procedures will be defined for running conditions like deceleration/braking or curve running. In addition, to include these running conditions within a global virtual certification process, numerical approaches for the assessment of the noise of such running conditions will be tested. Finally, the work package will also give key inputs for long term objectives of a certification procedure: for example, within the scope of global European noise policy, the certification process will allow for more reliable data as input for the mapping required by the European Noise Directive (END), 2002/49/EC.

 WP2: Noise Sources: Rolling noise
The scope of this WP is to study the influence of rolling noise sources in the operational scenarios defined in WP1 for certification tests and virtual tests. Rolling noise is the main source from running trains in many situations, typically at speeds above around 50 km/h. This is caused by the combined roughness of the wheel and the rail which above this speed causes both the wheel and track to vibrate and radiate sound.
Frequency-domain models, notably TWINS, are widely used to quantify rolling noise and to study the effect of new designs. However, despite validation and widespread use, there are still aspects of the models and their use that require further refinement as well as more precise definition of the method of operation if they are to be used reliably in virtual testing.

 WP3: Characterisation of vehicle specific noise sources

The scope of this WP is to characterise vehicle specific noise sources relevant for the operation scenarios defined by WP1 and WP5. The distinction “vehicle specific” means that all noise sources influenced by wheel-track interaction (i.e. rolling noise, curve squeal noise, braking noise) are excluded. The following noise sources are the main concern of this WP: cooling and ventilation systems, electric power and auxiliary systems (converters, transformers, etc.); traction systems (motor, gearbox, exhaust system of diesel vehicles); aero-acoustically generated noise of high train speeds.
An important task regarding each type of sub-system listed above will be to determine the adequate level of complexity for the source. This may range from a single point source (e.g. a ventilator) to a more general case built up of multiple equivalent sources with a certain geometrical distribution and complex radiation directivity patterns.

 WP4: Methodology to certify tools for acoustic virtual testing

The scope of this WP is to provide a procedure to validate tools for simulating pass-by noise, and standstill noise, in order to apply those tools for future certification purposes. The capabilities and requirements of such global simulation tools will be defined, based on the input and output parameters needed, the accuracy expected, and the validation process, that has to be satisfied.

 WP5: Validation of the noise virtual certification

The scope of this WP is to evaluate the methods developed within the project for virtual certification corresponding to the TSI Noise. The extent to which the targets for a new virtual certification process (set out in WP1) are achieved will be assessed, by a minimum degree of accuracy and cost reduction among other factors.
The overall objective is to ensure that this process is both practical and effective for all parties involved, and that the methods are well defined.
A procedure will be developed to show that the results achieved with simulation tools comply with the technical requirements of the TSI Noise. This procedure will be applied to the processes developed within the project, but shall also be applicable as a general concept ensuring good quality and reliability of the results.

 WP6: Dissemination and exploitation of the results

WP6 addresses all high level objectives, as none of them would be possible to achieve without the acceptance of the results by the European standardisation and regulation authorities. The widespread and targeted dissemination of project outputs is vital to the acceptance, and to the future implementation of technologies and methods developed.
An ACOUTRAIN Advisory Council has been established in order to inform railway stakeholders about ACOUTRAIN progress. In order to maximize the uptake of results, external dissemination activities will be directed towards other non-participating operators and suppliers as well as to ERA (European Railway Agency), NSAs (National Safety Authorities), NoBos (Notified Bodies) and standardisation bodies (CEN/CENELEC).

 WP7: Project management

The objectives of this WP are to set up a Project Management Office to take care of the following duties:
   o To manage and control the project resources (personnel, finance, equipment, etc.);
   o To monitor and control the financial and administrative procedures of the project;
   o To operatively support communication between the Consortium (Steering Board, Technical Management Team, Sustainability & Integration Group, the Operative Group) and the European Commission;
   o To sustain and facilitate internal communication;
   o To provide managerial assistance and support to the Steering Board, the Technical leader and WP Leaders;
   o To perform quality management.

 WP8: Technical Coordination

The two main objectives of this Work Package are the technical coordination at two levels:
   o Coordination of the work within each Work Package;
   o Overall project coordination amongst WP leaders and in conjunction with the technical leaders and the coordinator. This includes proposing successful problem solving solutions, ensuring a proper integration and the appraisal of project risks.