Press Release

View printer-friendly version << Back

MTS Helps Freight Operators Drive Down Costs With Accurate And Repeatable Wear Tests For Rail Industry

EDEN PRAIRIE, MN, Feb. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- MTS Systems Corporation (NASDAQ: MTSC), a leading global supplier of high-performance test systems and position sensors, has provided the U.S. Transportation Technology Center Inc. (TTCI) with a comprehensive test system to help the rail freight industry dramatically reduce ongoing maintenance costs.

MTS Systems Corporation. (PRNewsFoto/MTS Systems Corporation)

The largest ongoing maintenance cost for rail operators is the replacement of wheels and rails due to the natural surface wear that occurs as a result of wheel and rail contact. This wear causes the mechanical profiles of the wheels and rails to change over time. A better understanding of these changes can help to identify and mitigate potential risks and support reduced operational costs.

Conventional tests in this area have had considerable limitations because they are only able to address one wheel and one rail at a time, rather than a complete wheel set and corresponding rails. In addition, there are different forces acting on the front and back wheels. To date, test engineers have had to rely solely on carrying out comparative studies, which are time consuming and fail to deliver accurate test data.  

By developing a system capable of accurate and repeatable rolling contact fatigue (RCF) tests on a complete wheelset, MTS has provided TTCI with a unique solution that enables in-depth analysis of the impact of surface wear and rolling contact fatigue on the operational life of freight train rolling stock. Through the tests, engineers can better predict lifecycle and steering implications and assess how different geometries and materials can improve durability. This will help operators to extend the period over which rolling stock remains in service and minimize maintenance costs.  

"The test system developed by MTS is far more effective than existing single wheel test systems that are unable to replicate real world scenarios," stated Dr. Jeffrey Graves, Chief Executive Officer and President of MTS. "This is the latest chapter in a working relationship that MTS and TTCI have built over the course of 40 years."

"Apart from fuel, the largest single expense that freight operators have to deal with is maintaining and replacing wheels and rails, with millions of dollars each year being invested for this purpose," explained TTCI's Chief Executive Officer and President Lisa Stabler. "Results from the MTS test system will give us unique insight into the dynamics that cause damage and allow us to develop strategies to deliver significant savings."

About MTS Systems Corporation
MTS Systems Corporation's testing hardware, software and services solutions help customers accelerate and improve their design, development and manufacturing processes and are used for determining the mechanical behavior of materials, products and structures. MTS' high-performance position sensors provide controls for a variety of industrial and vehicular applications. MTS had 2,400 employees as of October 3, 2015 and revenue of $564 million for the fiscal year ended October 3, 2015. Additional information on MTS can be found at

About TTCI
The Transportation Technology Center, Inc. (TTCI) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Association of American Railroads (ARR). TTCI is a world-class transportation research and testing organization, providing emerging technology solutions for the railway industry throughout North America and the world. Headquartered in Pueblo, Colorado, the TTCI manages extensive track facilities, state-of-the-art laboratory facilities, and a highly talented engineering and support staff.

Logo -


To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:

SOURCE MTS Systems Corporation

Andy Cebulla, Director of Investor Relations and Treasurer, 952.937.4000