Nonlinear Observer Design for Guidance and Traction of Railway Vehicles

Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering book series (LNME)


State observer design turned out to be crucial in several recent railway vehicles projects on active control and condition monitoring at DLR, but may also be useful for emerging technologies like the cyber physical system and the digital twin approach or the realization of predictive maintenance concepts. With this background and motivation the paper presents a process in three steps: (i) an initial analysis results in a physical model, (ii) the subsequent transfer to state space representation facilitates the prove of observability and (iii) the observer synthesis supports the design of the observer feedback law. Results from two projects, one related to longitudinal or traction dynamics, the other associated to the guidance task of independently rotating wheels, demonstrate the application of the observer design process and offers a comparison of observer estimates with measurements.


State observer Railway vehicles Traction Guidance 



The DynORail project was supported by StMWi (StMWi grant number: MST-1308-0006//BAY 191/002), the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology. We very much appreciate the provision of roller rig measurement data by Knorr Bremse SfS, Munich, in the course of this project.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of System Dynamics and ControlGerman Aerospace Center (DLR)WesslingGermany

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