Impact Capacity Reduction in Railway Prestressed Concrete Sleepers with Surface Abrasions

Chayut Ngamkhanong, Dan Li, Sakdirat Kaewunruen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Citations (Scopus)
164 Downloads (Pure)


Railway sleepers (also called ‘railroad tie’ in North America) embedded in ballasted railway tracks are a main part of railway track structures. Its important role is to transfer the loads evenly from the rails to a wider area of ballast bed and to secure rail gauge and enable safe passages of rolling stocks. By nature, railway infrastructure is nonlinear, evidenced by its behaviours, geometry and alignment, wheel-rail contact and operational parameters such as tractive efforts. Based on our critical review, the dynamic behaviour of railway sleepers has not been fully investigated, especially when the sleepers are deteriorated by excessive wears. In fact, the ballast angularity causes differential abrasions on the soffit or bottom surface of sleepers (especially at railseat zone). Furthermore, in sharp curves and rapid gradient change, longitudinal and lateral dynamics of rails increase the likelihood of railseat abrasions in concrete sleepers due to the unbalanced loading conditions. This paper presents a structural capacity of concrete sleepers under dynamic transient loading. The modified compression field theory for ultimate strength design of concrete sleepers under impact loading will be highlighted in this study. The influences of surface abrasions, including surface abrasion and soffit abrasion, on the dynamic behaviour of prestressed concrete sleepers, are firstly highlighted. The outcome of this study will improve the rail maintenance and inspection criteria in order to establish appropriate and sensible remote track condition monitoring network in practice. Moreover, this study will also improve the understanding of the fundamental dynamic behaviour of prestressed concrete sleepers with surface abrasions. The insight into these behaviours will not only improve safety and reliability of railway infrastructure but will enhance the structural safety of other concrete structures.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWorld Multidisciplinary Civil Engineering - Architecture - Urban Planning Symposium
PublisherIOP Publishing Ltd.
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventWorld Multidisciplinary Civil Engineering - Architecture - Urban Planning Symposium: WMCAUS2017 - Prague, Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 12 Jun 201716 Jun 2017

Publication series

NameIOP Conf. Ser.: Mater. Sci. Eng.


ConferenceWorld Multidisciplinary Civil Engineering - Architecture - Urban Planning Symposium
Abbreviated titleWMCAUS2017
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
Internet address


  • Impact loading
  • Capacity
  • Railway sleeper
  • Prestressed concrete sleepers
  • Surface abrasion
  • soffit abrasion
  • railseat abrasion
  • structural safety


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