Satisfying standards by virtual prototyping: a case study of a Crash Hardened Memory Module for high speed trains

Enrico Serra

Fondazione Bruno Kessler

Marco Spagnolo


Manuel Avancini, Sougata Paha

SAIRA Electronics Italy


The modern railways industry is growing fast in complexity and safety requirements. Moreover, the certification organizations are putting pressure to companies to adopt high quality and safety standards. The Event Recorder Memory Module is a very effective solution available for high-speed trains that permits to record data and provide vital information for accident investigations, train handling studies, fuel conservation, vehicle performance, and preventative maintenance programs. Focusing on the internal Crash Hardened Memory Module (CHMM), it is mandatory to meet or even exceed current FRA and IEEE 1482.1-1999 crashworthy requirements. This module protects data from the most extreme conditions like fire, shock, crush and volatile liquids. Reducing testing cost by Finite Elements Analysis (FEA) is important, but performing those analyses accordingly to standards could be challenging due to complexity of the setup and lack of material data. In this work, we investigate the behavior of a CHMM module by applying thermal and shock loads, showing procedures and discussing assumptions to reproduce experimental conditions for standards.