Diagnostics and management methods for concrete sleepers
Rail Infrastructure Resilience: A Best-Practices Handbook
Ballasted railway track is very suitable for a different type of networks because of its many superior advantages in design, construction, short- and long-term maintenance, sustainability, and life cycle cost. An important part of the railway track system, which distributes the wheel load to the formation, is the railway sleeper. Improved knowledge has raised concerns about design techniques for prestressed concrete (PC) sleepers. Most current design codes for these rely on allowable stresses and material strength reductions. However, premature cracking of PC sleepers has been found in railway tracks. The causes of cracking are various such as environmental degradation, dynamic loads, rail seat deterioration, cyclic loads, tamping damage, etc. This chapter presents the results of the extensive analytical and experimental investigations aimed at predicting mechanisms that could result in failures on sleepers. It highlights the diagnostics and management methods for sleepers and presents guidelines pertaining to durability design, so that any operational condition could be catered for optimally in the design.
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