As with most highway bridges, railway transitions experience differential movements due to differences in track system stiffness, track damping characteristics, foundation type, ballast settlement from fouling and/or degradation, as well as fill and subgrade settlement. This differential movement is especially problematic for high speed rail infrastructure as the “bump” at the transition is accentuated at high speeds. Identification of different factors contributing towards this differential movement, as well as development of design and maintenance strategies to mitigate the problem is imperative for the safe and economical operation of both freight and passenger rail networks. This paper presents the research framework and preliminary findings from a recently initiated research effort at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Aimed at developing design and repair techniques to mitigate differential movement at railway transitions, this research project involves instrumentation, performance monitoring and numerical modeling of new and existing track transitions.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.