The project, which will develop trough real needs specification, design methodologies implementation, specimens construction and experimental tests, will make for the design of better cost-effective track systems and thus have a significant economic impact on the basis of a real industrial need both for new railways and for renewals.
Several very successful developments have been achieved in the project. The most noticeable are:
- identification of reference performance specification for the new advanced track system
- development and validation of special analytical procedures and related new advanced finite elements models for structural-dynamic analysis, and definition and set-up of numerical boundary elements simulation procedures for noise emission and propagation
- development of innovative materials and products required to assure the envisaged performances to the advanced slab track systems (elastomeric mats and special solutions to reduce acoustic reverberation)
- design, construction and testing of performances of a new advanced floating-mass slab track system
- improvement of the reliability, availability, durability and maintainability of the track system and enhancement of the quality of track construction.
The usual track typologies now employed on urban railways consist of traditional systems made of sleepers embedded in ballast beds. Such systems do not satisfy on the whole the new demands imposed by the increased public awareness of the need to reduce the environmental impact and to devote maximum attention to safety and reliability. The development of advanced urban track systems for improving the overall track system performances with particular regard to environmental factors is therefore required.Innovating design methodologies and new concepts through implementation of accurate analytical models will be employed; experimental tests both in lab and in situ will provide the input data needed for the numerical predictions and validate the design models employed in the study.
ms shows the potential optimal solution to be the employment of prefabricated slab tracks, possibly with other components and devices integrated in order to provide the requested performances.