Lateral deck accelerations are an important measure of ride quality, particularly for rail shipment of finished automobiles and for intermodal rail cars. Automobiles are sensitive to cyclic lateral inputs, which may lead to resonance and vehicle damage. Intermodal loads are generally less sensitive to lateral accelerations. However, this equipment operates at high speed for long periods and has the greatest exposure to truck instability. Improving the stability of rail cars not only benefits ride quality but also reduces wear of the car and truck components.

This report details the reduction in lateral deck accelerations of autoracks and all-purpose spine cars when equipped with hydraulic yaw dampers. High speed stability measurements were recorded at the AAR Transportation Technology Center, Inc. (TTCI) near Pueblo, Colorado.

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