This paper addresses the problem of identifying a system of forces from vehicle crossing a guideway using only the vibration responses caused by the forces as the input without knowledge of the vehicle characteristics. The vehicle is modeled as a single axle and two-axle loads with fixed axle spacing moving on a simply supported beam with viscous damping. The equations of motion of the beam are obtained through modal coordinate transformation, and the resulting set of equations relating the Fourier transforms of the responses and the moving forces are converted into time domain by a new method proposed by the authors. Correctness of the identified forces are checked by the correlation between the measured responses and the responses reconstructed with the identified forces moving on the beam. Experimental result shows that the method is effective to give good correlation when both measured bending moment and acceleration are used, and it is faster and it gives more accurate estimate of the total mass of the vehicle than an existing method.

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