This paper presents the results of an experimental study to establish the strength and energy absorption capability of cab car rail vehicle corner structures built to current strength requirements and for structures modified to carry higher loads and absorb more energy. We reviewed current structures and designed an end beam test element — the most common way of meeting current requirements — whose strength in the baseline state was at least 150,000 lbf. This design was then modified to provide a strength of over 400,000 lbf. The designs, which included consideration of the deformation and fracture response under impact loading, were carried out using conventional structural engineering methods and explicit finite element analysis.

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