Track geomechanics for future railways: use of artificial inclusions

Springer International Publishing
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Lecture Notes in Civil Engineering, 2021, 165, pp. 139-154
Issue Date:
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ICTG2020_Indraratna_Track Geomechanics for Future Railways.pdfAccepted version2.83 MB
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Given that current ballasted tracks cannot support faster and heavier Australian heavy freight trains, the need to develop innovative and sustainable ballasted tracks for transport infrastructure is crucial. This paper reviews and discusses the use of artificial inclusions such as recycled rubber mats, end-of-life tyres, and geogrids to stabilize ballasted rail tracks overlying soft formation soil. It also presents a novel solution for increasing the stability and resiliency of track structure by energy-absorbing recycled rubber tyres. This study confirms that a capping layer confined by tyres will actively reduce ballast breakage within the track substructure. Numerical simulations employing discrete element method (DEM) are also carried out to study the micro-mechanical aspects of ballast aggregates and the interaction between the particles and inclusions. This study shows that waste rubber products and geosynthetics will eliminate the need for a capping layer in certain terrain and help to decrease the thickness of the ballast layer. The outcomes of this study will lead to a better understanding of the performance of ballast tracks reinforced with artificial inclusions and also help to improve the design and cost-effectiveness of ballasted tracks, with a view to enhancing passenger comfort and safety.
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