Technology Scribes

The Technology Behind In-Motion Rail Scales

In-Motion Rail ScalesIn-motion rail scales (also sometimes referred to as "in-motion railroad scales" or "in-motion train scales") utilize some of the most advanced technologies in heavy-duty weighing equipment.

In-motion rail scales are designed to measure the payload weight of trains as they pass by (thus "in-motion") a given point on a railway. These scale systems used for agriculture, mining, or other large scale operations that demand accurate weight measurements of contents being transported via train. The overall purpose of in-motion rail scales is to efficiently provide a means to calculate the weight, and thus the value, of a train's load based on its unique payload weight.

How The In-motion Rail Scale Technology Works

In-motion rail scale systems are typically installed on directly on the railroad track's main line. There are two unique types of these rail scales.

The first and perhaps the most common technology of in-motion rail scales pinpoints a select spot on the tracks where trains must pass by at specific speed. When a train car travels over the scale system, the weight can be calculated based on the force applied to the track at this given location.

The second type of rail scale centers on measuring the train carts distance coverage. Weighing applications may be installed on select ends of the cart to measure the in-motion weight. This system, although more intricate, can provide a more accurate weight measurement than the former.

Advantages of In-motion Rail Scales

There are numerous advantages to using in-motion rail scales for large scale operations. Some of these include:

  • Efficiently measuring the payload weight of contents on train carts before being transported
  • Determining if carts have been overloaded and thus at risk of wasted content (or in some cases a penalty)
  • Detecting issues of drastically uneven loads and overall payload management inefficiencies
  • Controlling the weight distribution for improved operational efficiency

In short, in-motion rail scales are used to promote optimal efficiency in countless operations that demand accurate payload weighing and management.


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