Modelling and controller design for self-adjusting railway track switch system

Rail vehicles are directed along different routes through track switch systems. These switches are subjected to high loads and vibrations which may introduce misalignment in the switch layout. The objective of the current project is to develop a simulation model of a ‘self-adjusting’ switch. The switch should be able to detect the existence of any misalignment (within a predefined range) between the stock rails and switch rails and will be able to re-align itself. The first phase of the project is to model a working track switch system, High Performance Switch System (HPSS), which is in operation in the UK. The multi-body simulation software Simpack is used to model the switch panel and Simulink is used for modelling the actuator mechanism of HPSS. A co-simulation environment is created in Simulink to construct the complete model of the switch system. The model has been validated with the data available from the working switches. The second phase of the project will be to create misalignment in the switch layout and develop a control strategy which will be able to adjust the misalignment.