Railway Measurement, Data Analysis & Testing Railway Measurement, Data Analysis & Testing | HBM

Solutions for Reliable and Solid Railway Measurement-, Test- and Analysis Results

The extensive testing of railway vehicles in labs and on-track, including the official approval of mechanical and electrical components, brakes, and the overall vehicle acoustics, is a requirement for conformance and homologation.

Whether the physical testing of individual components or entire vehicles is performed in the laboratory, on development test benches, or on-track in realistic conditions, it is necessary to examine:

  • Safe and reliable operations
  • Structural durability, fatigue, robustness and reliability
  • Propulsion performance and efficiency
  • Fulfilment of legal demands and international standards (for example, EN 15227, EN 14363)

Efficient Testing and Data Analysis

To support railway vehicle manufacturers, and help suppliers and operators validate their innovative developments and products, HBK provides the complete measurement chain – an extensive offering that not only includes tools for test, measurement and analysis but also engineering services and support.

The flexible integration of measurements of all kinds into one setup boosts development efficiency, making the complex process of development and testing easier and less risky, allowing manufacturers to develop vehicles that are efficient,  and designed for maximum safety.

40+ years of global experience in physical measurement technology for the development of trams, metro trains, passenger and freight wagons, multiple units, locomotives, special vehicles, and high-speed multiple units, make HBK the right partner for you. Don’t hesitate to contact us, our experts will be happy to support you and your testing project – from building the complete measurement chain to analysis – and provide a hassle-free testing flow and efficient development.

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Choose Your Railway Testing Environment

Lab and Test Bench

In lab testing, where test programs replay real-world operating profiles, HBK takes care of all the accelerated testing measurements on the test specimen.

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Mobile and On-track

In mobile railway testing, the performance of the vehicle and its components are tested in driving situations under the impact of all environmental parameters such as loads, temperature, humidity and much more.

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Reliable Measurement Equipment for Harsh Environmental Testing

  • High signal quality and bandwidth
  • Wide temperature range: –40 to +80 °C, dew point resistant
  • High degree of protection against dust, dirt, and water (IP65/IP67)
  • Shock and vibration-proof (MIL grade)

HBK: One-stop Shop Product and Service Partner

  • All-round railway measurement expertise – from sales consultant to application engineer
  • Powerful software solution for DAQ and data analysis to accelerate decision making
  • Reduced risk for bench and in-field testing using highly reliable equipment
  • Complete and perfectly matching measurement chains (from sensor to result)
  • International service where needed (training, calibration, engineering, troubleshooting, etc.)


  • Clear user interface ensures ease of use every step of the way
  • Centralized or distributed system topologies allow for maximum flexibility and minimum cost
  • Scalable and expandable – future-proof investment
  • Automate your measurement and data analysis process by scripting

Railway Lab and Bench Testing

A railway vehicle’s life expectancy, efficiency and reliability depends on its resistance to mechanical loads and weather influences without jeopardizing safety and efficiency.

Components can only be approved if they meet the specific requirements set by national supervisory authorities (for example the federal rail office). Structural test programs cover true market requirements with strain and force-based measurements mainly used to calculate resulting accumulated fatigue damage. Knowing the characteristics of materials also helps engineers develop components and train systems. The use of reliable measurement technology ensures a high level of safety and traceability of measurement results.

HBK supports your testing for:

Structural Integrity and Acoustics

  • Failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA)
  • Fatigue analysis based on FEM/FEA
  • Measurement of expansion/mechanical tension, crack propagation, force, relative paths, acceleration
  • Fatigue strength testing according EN 12663-1, -2; EN 13749
  • Measurement of torsion and torsional oscillation, as well as twist testing
  • NVH – noise, vibration harshness measurements
  • Acoustic characteristics and noise

Powertrain Testing and Analysis (Dyno, Electric Power, Battery and Fuel Cell)

Component Testing

  • Pulling and impact direction
  • Fatigue strength testing on traction and buffer gears (EN 15551, EN 15566)
  • Automatic coupling

Electrical Analysis


"HBK is more than just a tool supplier for measurement, testing and data analysis in our railway vehicle validation programs. The HBK offering is basically complete, covering many applications in lab, bench and mobile testing with centralized data analytics and management. They also have the railway expertise and responsiveness you need when the track is closed for testing and the clock is ticking."

DB Systemtechnik, HBK customer

Mobile Railway Testing

In mobile testing, vehicles and components are subjected to real conditions. Here, the vehicle response to typical impacts, such as mass, load, track characteristics, and speed, is measured.

There are numerous application options and cases for HBK mobile measurement data acquisition in rail traffic. Whether it be investigating the dynamic behaviour of railway carriages, or checking specific parameters, HBK measurement technology not only provides valuable insights, but also supports you with tests and acceptance runs.

HBK mobile testing also helps manufacturers to comply with the tough international safety standards for railway vehicle bodies, for example, EN 15227.

HBK measurement technology is suitable for, among other things, the following:

Rail Network Testing and Homologation

Bogie, Track and Brake Analysis

  • Measurement of vehicle comfort
  • Determination of the vehicle parameters inclination coefficient, roll pole height, spatial centre of gravity and twist coefficient of the vehicle body
  • Testing using measuring wheel sets
  • On-track testing of torsion and bending on the wheel set (rolling tests) according to UIC 544-1
  • Investigating of the freedom of movement in different track geometries
  • Testing of brake control and brake mechanics (including lining or brake pad force measurements) according to EN or UIC
  • Slide protection (WSP) tests (UIC 541-05/EN 15595)
  • Testing of stopping reliability/break-away force of the parking brakes
  • Determination of inclination coefficient and roll pole height
  • High-speed testing

Component Testing: Coupling, Compressors, Generators and more

Sound and Noise Analysis

  • Noise investigation tests/pass-by noise tests with microphone array („acoustic camera“)
  • Approval noise tests in accordance with TSI NOI and EN ISO 3095
  • Running dynamics and noise approval tests

Pantograph Testing

Impact Testing

  • Dynamic impact tests on tank containers, MEGCs and flexi tanks
  • Derailment safety tests, rail crash tests or impact tests


One System for Mobile and Lab Measurements and Evaluation

Analytical insights from measurement and test data can immediately be used for design and system improvements. Add value to your processes by maintaining your test processes and vehicle condition in the HBK software and report automatically from the software in your desired data format and according to EN specifications.

  • Analog measurement signals such as mechanical strain, acceleration, pressure, bogie rotation, displacement, noise, and more
  • Position and speed by GNSS sensors (satellite based: GPS, Baidu, Galileo, Glonass; Inertial Measurement Units (IMU))
  • Acquiring vehicle network data
  • Video and imaging

Benefit from the HBK measurement ecosystem: optical and electrical sensors, data acquisition systems – QuantumX and SomatXR – and software solutions for data analysis and simulation. Offering you everything from sensor to result, HBK reliably supports your testing – in the lab and on the track.

Going the Extra Mile: Supplementary Service and Support

Our service and support team will assist you in all issues regarding test and measurement applications. We offer:

Case Studies