Evaluation of CO2 emissions from railway resurfacing maintenance activities

Steven Krezo, Olivia Mirza, Sakdirat Kaewunruen, Joseph Sussman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
249 Downloads (Pure)


This paper is the world first to investigate the CO2 impact of railway resurfacing in ballasted track bed maintenance. Railway resurfacing is an important routine maintenance activity that restores track geometry to ensure safety, reliability and utility of the asset. This study consisted of an extensive field data collection from resurfacing machineries (diesel-engine tamping machines, ballast regulators and ballast stabilisers) including travel distances, working distances, fuel consumption and construction methodologies. Fuel consumption was converted to a kg CO2/m using the embodied energies of diesel. Analyses showed that tamping machines emitted the highest CO2 emissions of the resurfacing machineries, followed by ballast regulators and ballast stabilisers respectively. Tamping machines processed 4.25 metres of track per litre of diesel, ballast regulators processed 6.51 metres of track per litre of diesel and ballast stabilisers processed 10.61 metres of track per litre of diesel. The results were then compared to previous studies and a parametric study was carried out to consider long-term resurfacing CO2 emissions on Australian railway track. The outcome of this study is unprecedented and it enables track engineers and construction managers to critically plan strategic rail maintenance and to develop environmental-friendly policies for track geometry and alignment restoration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-465
Number of pages8
JournalTransportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment
Early online date1 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018


  • carbon footprint
  • green house gas emission
  • railway resurfacing
  • strategic maintenance
  • construction management


Dive into the research topics of 'Evaluation of CO2 emissions from railway resurfacing maintenance activities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this