Parametric study on the resilient response of ballasted railway track using numerical modelling
Ballasted rail track substructure usually consists of graded layers of granular media of ballast and subballast (capping) placed above a compacted subgrade (formation soil). The optimum design of railway track substructure relies on many factors that affect the performance of the track. In this paper, the response of railway track to various factors affecting track performance is investigated by carrying out a parametric study using the finite element analysis (PLAXIS). A plane strain finite element model of railway track section is developed and used for the parametric study. The feasibility of the developed finite element model is examined by comparing its results with measured field test data. The various track factors investigated include the thickness and stiffness of different track layers, shoulder width, and track modulus. The results demonstrate that the subgrade stiffness seems to be the most significant factor affecting track response, thus, the numerical model and experimental data are used to investigate the capability of different stabilization techniques, such as geosynthetics and grout columns, for improving track subgrade behavior.
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