The slipstream and wake of a high speed train

Christopher Baker, SJ Dalley, T Johnson, Andrew Quinn, NG Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

85 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes the results of experimental work to determine the structure of the slipstream and wake of a high speed train. The experiments were carried out using a 1/25th scale model of a four-coach train on a moving model rig (MMR). Flow velocities were measured using a rake of single hot films positioned close to the model side or roof. Tests were carried out at different model speeds, with and without the simulation of a crosswind. Velocity time histories for each configuration were obtained from ensemble averages of the results of a number of runs. A small number of particle imaging velocimetry (PIV) experiments were also carried out, and a wavelet analysis revealed details of the unsteady flow structure around the vehicle. It was shown that the flowfield around the vehicle could be divided into a number of different regions of distinct flow characteristics: an upstream region, a nose region, a boundary layer region, a near wake region and a far wake region. If the results were suitably normalized, the effect of model speed was small. The effect of crosswinds was to add an increment to the slipstream and wake velocities, and this resulted in very high slipstream velocities in the nose region.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-99
Number of pages17
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part F Journal of Rail and Rapid Transit
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2001


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