The objectives can be achieved through the following approach:

  • to define the significant parameters for identifying the level of duty conditions (loads): track characteristics and conditions, vehicle characteristics and conditions, traffic type and density.
  • to identify the range of duty conditions that exists on segments of the track infrastructure of participating networks taking into account the influence of vehicle characteristics and condition and traffic density.
  • to select, through consultation with network operators, those duty conditions and track parameters that could provide the most marked decreases in LCC through the implementation of improved products and processes. In addition to the use of improved products in track renewals, the objective will also be to increase the residual life of existing track through the use of better maintenance practices.

Updated functional specifications for a track infrastructure in a new network will be made available, also based upon:

  • sensitivity analysis and parametric studies which evaluate the influence of track parameters (such as gauge, gauge widening, rail type, rail support stiffness, gauge tolerance, …) on track stability, on noise & vibrations, on construction costs and on LCC in general;
  • the findings in ongoing EC research projects such as CORRUGATION, INMAR, TURNOUTS, SPURT, MODTRAIN, WIDEM, SILENCE, QCITY.
  • The updating of these functional specifications is an objective of this SP. These specifications will be used in SP1 and SP2.

The key deliverables of SP5 are the following:

  • a methodology for track and vehicle categorisation and a generic model capable of predicting the duty conditions for a range of input track, vehicle and traffic parameters;
  • an identification in co-operation with the networks operators of selected stretches of tangent tracks and S&C locations where the duty conditions are sufficiently onerous to cause rapid deterioration which leads to a high frequency of maintenance and LCC;
  • the development of updated functional track specifications in terms of minimal LCC.

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