Ballastless track slab offers excellent stability and durability and has been well accepted in high-speed railways worldwide. Rails are typically laid on precast concrete slabs that are subjected to dynamic load transferred from the rails. Cracks can be induced by shrinkage and mechanical loading in concrete, which accelerates the degradation and affects the performance of the track slab. As tens of thousands of miles of ballastless track are constructed, effective and efficient maintenance for the concrete slabs has become an issue. In this paper, ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) is proposed to fabricate ballastless track slab. UHPC is a superior fiber-reinforced, cementitioius mortar, which has greatly-improved mechanical strengths and durability. A recently-developed UHPC is evaluated in terms of the flowability, durability, shrinkage, and mechanical properties. A functionally-graded slab design is proposed with the consideration of initial material cost. The slab is cast with two layers: a layer of conventional concrete at the bottom, and a layer of UHPC on the top. A three-dimensional finite element model is developed for ballastless track slab whose flexural performance is investigated and compared with that of slab made with conventional concrete. Concrete damage plasticity model is incorporated to consider the post-cracking behavior. The results indicate that the proposed UHPC is promising for fabricating ballastless track slab with superior performance.

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