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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015, Article ID 819165, 16 pages
Research Article

Numerical Algorithms for the Analysis of Initial Configuration in a Railway Catenary Structure and Its Code Implementation: A Software Tool CALPE

1Departamento de Mecánica Aplicada e Ingeniería de Proyectos, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 02071 Albacete, Spain
2Departamento de Sistemas Informáticos, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 02071 Albacete, Spain

Received 9 April 2015; Accepted 2 August 2015

Academic Editor: Evangelos J. Sapountzakis

Copyright © 2015 Jesús Benet et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


To obtain the best operating conditions in a railway infrastructure, as the pantograph/catenary system, is a priority issue in modern railways, for a correct management and the best performance of this infrastructure. Although most of the published works on this subject are oriented to solving dynamic problems, in order to successfully address these problems a previous static study is necessary. In this paper, we present a methodology for the study of the forces in a railway catenary, according to the equations of statics equilibrium. The results of this work have allowed us to develop two iterative algorithms that calculate a simple and computationally effective lengths of the droppers, which is crucial to determine the initial structural configuration of the catenary parameter. The obtained results have led us to the implementation of a tool to obtain very precise assemblies with significant savings in maintenance, therefore still being used by ADIF, the Spanish railway administration of railways infrastructures.