Concrete railroad ties can experience deterioration from freezing and thawing in cold climates typical to many railroads. Materials and manufacturing processes used to make concrete railroad ties can be controlled to give ties a long period of frost immunity. A performance-based criterion for selection of concrete materials and durability requirements would allow plants more flexibility in material selection and improve overall performance in the field. A new performance-based approach is described to concrete freeze-thaw quality control. In order to accommodate implementation, work was performed at a precast concrete railroad tie manufacturing plant to compare currently used concrete freeze-thaw quality control methods to the proposed performance-based method. This comparison is described to illustrate the benefits of this new performance-based approach.

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