Influence of ballast conditions on flexural responses of railway concrete sleepers in track systems

Sakdirat Kaewunruen, Alex Remennikov

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Abstract

Railway sleepers in track systems are usually modeled using the beam on elastic foundation theory. In reality, the sleeper-supported ballast is of highly frictional granular media but does not provide any tensile resistance. This paper presents a finite element model of a railway sleeper in a track system, taking into account the tensionless nature of the elastic support. The highlight of this paper is the effect of ballast distributions on the flexural responses of railway sleepers in track systems. Using a finite element package STRAND7, the finite element model updating of the concrete sleeper was earlier developed and validated against experimental dynamic characteristics by the authors. The numerical model is capable of simulating the tensionless ballast support whereas the supporting boundary condition provides resistance to only compression. The numerical simulations are demonstrated as to investigate the quasi-static bending moment resultants of the railway concrete sleeper against the current design methodology. This study explores the effectiveness of the provision in the current design code for bending moment calculations under various support conditions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalConcrete In Australia, Journal of Concrete Institute of Australia
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2009

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