Technical Reports

Assessment of Design Tools and Criteria for Urban Rail Track Structures: Volume I. At-Grade Tie-Ballast Track

  • 01
  • Apr
  • 1974
AUTHOR: Robert H. Prause, Howard C. Meacham
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: UMTA-MA-06-0025-74-3
SUBJECT: Track
KEYWORDS: Rapid Transit Systems, Rail Wear, Soil Mechanics
ABSTRACT: The development of techniques and criteria for track design is an important part of the Rail Supporting Technology Program that is being managed for the Urban Mass Transportation Administration by the Transportation Systems Center (TSC). This report presents the results of a critical review of the technical factors which govern the design and performance of at-grade tie-ballast track for urban rail systems. The assessment of current design practice is based on a review of the literature and discussions with experienced track design personnel. The evaluation includes design loads and the criteria for selecting rail size, tie size and spacing, ballast depth, and subgrade parameters. The major track problems identified were rail joints, rail wear and noise on curves, rail fasteners, and rail corrugation. Detailed technical evaluations were made to determine those areas where the track design procedures are inadequate. The report includes detailed information for the engineering design of track and recommendations for both short and long-range program plans for future research pertaining to the improvement of track performance. Volume II of this two volume report, entitled "At-Grade Slab Track," gives similar results for at-grade concrete slab track construction.
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