Peridynamics Modelling of Rail Surface Defects in Urban Railway and Metro Systems

Andris Freimanis, Sakdirat Kaewunruen, Makoto Ishida

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Rail squats and studs, which are one of critical rail surface defects, are typically classified as the propagation of any cracks that have grown longitudinally through the subsurface. Some of the cracks could propagate to the bottom of rails transversely, which have branched from the initial longitudinal cracks with a depression of rail surface. The rail defects are commonly referred to as ‘squats’ when they were initiated from damage layer caused by rolling contact fatigue, and as ‘studs’ when they were associated with white etching layer caused by the transform from pearlitic steel due to friction heat generated by wheel sliding or excessive traction. Such above-mentioned rail defects have been often observed in railway tracks catered for either light passenger or heavy freight traffics and for low, medium or high speed trains all over the world for over 60 years except some places such as sharp curves where large wear takes place under severe friction between wheel flange and rail gauge face. It becomes a much-more significant issue when the crack grows and sometimes flakes off the rail (by itself or by insufficient rail grinding), resulting in a rail surface irregularity. Such rail surface defect induces wheel/rail impact and large amplitude vibration of track structure and poor ride quality. In Australia, Europe and Japan, rail squats/studs have occasionally turned into broken rails.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages3
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2018


  • peridynamics
  • modelling
  • railway
  • rail squats
  • rail surface defect
  • urban railway
  • metro systems


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