Stabilisation of Stiffer Rail Track Substructure Using Artificial Inclusion
The railway transport system in many countries plays a significant role in the passage of bulk freight and passengers. However, increased train speeds and higher freight loads (large dynamic wheel loads) accelerate the deterioration of rail track substructure. This problem is more critical in isolated rail track locations where the track substructure is much stiffer than the regular surface track assembly such as track at the bridges and tunnels. Ballast is a key track foundation material placed underneath the sleepers which provides structural support against high cyclic and impact stresses caused by moving trains. Inclusion of rubber mats called under ballast mats (UBMs) placed between the ballast and stiffer base layer is one of the measures to minimise the ballast deterioration. In this study, cyclic loads representing fast and heavy haul trains were simulated on stiffer track foundation condition using a large-scale process simulation prismoidal triaxial apparatus to investigate the mitigation of strain, stress and degradation characteristics of ballast stabilised with UBM.