Influence of Asymmetrical Topology on Structural Behaviours of Bearers and Sleepers in Turnout Switches and Crossings

  • Sakdirat Kaewunruen
  • Alex M. Remennikov
  • Serdar DindarEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Sustainable Civil Infrastructures book series (SUCI)


Railway infrastructure is nonlinear by nature, scientifically proven by its behaviours, geometry and alignment, wheel-rail forces and operational parameters such as tractive efforts. It is often found that most train-turnout interaction models do not consider the time dependent ballast degradation. Such ballast degradation later causes differential settlement and aggravates impact forces acting on partial and unsupported sleepers and bearers. Furthermore, localised ballast breakages underneath any railseat increase the likelihood of centre-bound cracks in railway sleepers and bearers due to the unbalanced support. This paper presents a numerical simulation of a standard-gauge concrete bearer at crossing panel, taking into account the tensionless nature of ballast support. The finite element model was calibrated using static and dynamic responses using past experiments. In this paper, the influences of topologic asymmetry on both sagging and hogging behaviours of crossing bearers are firstly investigated. In addition, it is the first to demonstrate the effects of sleeper length on the design consideration of turnout bearers in crossing panel. The outcome of this study will improve the railway turnout construction and maintenance criteria in order to improve train-turnout interaction and ride comfort.



The first author wishes to gratefully acknowledge the Japan Society for Promotion of Science (JSPS) for his JSPS Invitation Research Fellowship (Long-term), Grant No L15701, at Track Dynamics Laboratory, Railway Technical Research Institute and at Concrete Laboratory, the University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan. The JSPS financially supports this work as part of the research project, entitled “Smart and reliable railway infrastructure”. Special thanks to European Commission for H2020-MSCA-RISE Project No. 691135 “RISEN: Rail Infrastructure Systems Engineering Network”. In addition, the sponsorships and assistance from CEMEX, Network Rail, RSSB (Rail Safety and Standard Board, UK) and G+D Computing (Dr Erik Kostson) with respect to STRAND7 are highly appreciated.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sakdirat Kaewunruen
    • 1
  • Alex M. Remennikov
    • 2
  • Serdar Dindar
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Railway and Civil Engineering, School of EngineeringThe University of BirminghamBirminghamUK
  2. 2.School of Civil Mining and Environmental Engineering University of WollongongWollongongAustralia
  3. 3.Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education, School of EngineeringThe University of BirminghamBirminghamUK

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