Residual stresses are known to significantly impact the initiation and growth of cracks in metallic components such as railway wheels. Tensile residual stresses are of particular concern due to their ability to non-conservatively affect performance. Vertical split rim (VSR) is an important failure mode for railway wheels. Vertical split rim, like any crack growth failure mode, is significantly influenced by residual stress (e.g., mean or steady stress effects). The crack face of a typical VSR wheel shows signs of low-cycle fatigue. Recently, residual stress measurements were performed on a set of Class C railway wheels. This study looked at the difference in axial residual stress for wheels in three primary conditions: new (as manufactured), service-worn, and wheels that failed through VSR. Residual stresses were significantly larger in the service-worn condition and for wheels that had failed due to VSR relative to the new condition. There is a small difference in the axial residual stress profiles of wheels that failed due to VSR compared to other service-worn wheels. It is unclear, however, if the difference is significant based on a limited population of data. This paper provides a description of the methods used to quantify residual stress in the Class C railway wheels and presents important results from the study.

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